Just as I suspected after devouring her Guild Hunter series, this was a book and series opener that I would love. Amazing worldbuilding, plotting, and characters. I was eager to dive in and now I’m eager to press on.
I’m well aware that because I’m coming to this one late, most folks already know the score, but I just can’t help myself so I’m doing a summary. Haha!
The story is set not far into the future and the earth as we know it is populated by three races: humans, advanced psychic humans known as Psy, and the animal shifting changlings. Several generations before, the Psy began instituting changes because they feared the trouble that came with emotions so they instituted laws that brought Silence. Now all Psy are indoctrinated as young to suppress feelings and emotions and any weaknesses or flaws for fear of death or a mind=wiping. The Psy are also not born equal with some having more psychic power and these are known as Cardinals. Cardinal Psy are generally slated to hold a powerful Council position and ruthlessly gain it and keep it.
Slave to Sensation begins with Sascha Duncan being sent out on a business dealing between her Psy family and the unheard of partnership with a powerful changling pack. Sascha suspects her cunning mother has a purpose for this business deal as does the alpha, Lucas Hunter. Sascha has to walk a tightrope between psy and changling hostilities and intrigues, but this is nothing new because she’s been doing that all her life. Sascha considers herself a broken psy because unlike her people, she feels and senses emotion in others. Her very freedom and life is at stake so she has developed the strongest mindshields ever to protect her secret. Only now, with the contact she has to the sensual Lucas, her shields are cracking and it’s only a matter of time before her secret is out.
Lucas is the alpha of his pack of leopards and it is his job to protect them. Only now, his pack and others have had females go missing and then their bodies are found tortured days later. The scent of a Psy male is on them and the Psy leadership is suppressing the investigation. The changelings are organizing for war if the psy can’t be brought to justice. Lucas has his own plans to gain justice and revenge, but avoid a war- he’ll use the opening he has when the Duncan family agreed to a business deal. Sascha Duncan is his way inside to investigate if he can only break through her coldness to gain the information he needs. His encounters with Sascha surprise him because he senses that she is hiding that she feels and she is denying the truth of what he shares from his investigation because it leads close to home. Lucas is also aware that his panther side doesn’t see enemy when he sees Sascha.
I enjoyed the introduction to the Psy-Changling world and the characters. It was exciting to have the story paired with the intense intrigue surrounding Sascha’s secrets and also the psy serial killer. The romance development was a little weak, but the romance was full of passion and connection. I suspect this is a little because it was the first book in the series and somethings gotta give so maybe the next books can focus more strongly on development now that the groundwork is laid.
I look forward to what is to come now that things are starting to come out about the psy race and the tension between the races. Each of the wolf and leopard pack members introduced seem to have a story to tell. I would definitely recommend this book/series to paranormal romance fans.
Challenges Met (2016):
Romance Roundabout #359 PNR
Mt. TBR #108
New to Me #137 series
Read All the Books #1