Review: The Decaying Empire

Author: Laura Thalassa
Date of Publication: April 21,2015
Pages: 329
Series: Book 2  of The Vanishing Girl 
Source: Net Galley - Thank you!
When eighteen-year-old teleporter Ember Pierce wakes up in a Los Angeles hospital, she remembers only the basics: she’s been trained by the government as a spy, she’s sent on dangerous missions, and her last assignment—the one that landed her in the hospital—was a setup.
Caden Hawthorne has spent the past ten months of his life grieving Ember’s death. So when she shows up in his room like an apparition, he can’t believe his eyes. But this Ember is different. Her hair is longer, her skin is paler, her gaze is haunted. She tells him what he’s already begun to suspect: someone he trusted betrayed her.
Now, uncertain who is friend and who is foe, Ember and Caden face the toughest mission of their lives—to stay together and survive, as they run from danger toward an unknown future. 

I read this one before exams as a stress reliever and as a method of procrastination. It definitely helped with the latter, but the former’s results are inconclusive. 

Fast paced thrillers like this are beginning to reveal themselves as my guilty pleasure reads. They are just so riveting. Like a rollercoster ride.You hold on tight because you know the accelerator isn’t being released any time soon. 

Set 10 months after the events of the previous book, Laura Thalassa wastes no time with raising the stakes. Weak, drugged and angry, Ember is set to GTFO. Excuse my language. 

I really appreciated the active planning and executing of said plans by the protagonists in this book. Ember and Caden received a real lesson in the consequences of waiting too long to react in the previous instalment. This time they were more proactive and Caden was also more involved. 

Despite having learned some lessons, one lesson that Ember and Caden seemed to have missed, again, was open communication. It is so infuriating as a reader to watch characters withhold information from each other, which then screws them over in the long run. Still, I couldn’t fault them fully for doing so, especially as honesty might not have gotten much done. I do look forward to a different method of conflict building in the next book.

Still, the story has me on the edge of my seat as Ember and Caden ran or tried to run for their lives. My heart kind of broke for them as I watched them struggle. I honestly couldn’t think of a better plan to help with their situation so I enjoyed reading them trying to execute their flawed plan and face trouble when it came at them instead of twiddling their thumbs and waiting.

Once again, Thalassa managed to build up to another striking ending. I feel sorry for Ember and Caden but I can’t say I didn’t enjoy the struggle. 



  1. I absolutely love the sound of this series. teleportation, being used as weapons and it sounds as though it has a mature sci fi / dystopian type feel to it as well. I love the thought of reading new adult that ISN'T a contemporary, especially after loving ACOTAR. Wonderful review poppet, have added book one to my TBR already <3

    1. It's honestly such a fun series, I'm surprised that I have yet to come upon someone who's read the books. Also, the ACOTAR hype is on another category all together! (soo excited!) I hope you enjoy this one when you get around to it :)



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