Review: Slave to Sensation by Nalini Singh

Posted January 11, 2021 by Sophia Rose in Reviews / 16 Comments

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Review: Slave to Sensation by Nalini Singh
Slave to Sensation
Narrated by Angela Dawe

One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

Series: Psy-Changeling #1
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Published by Tantor Audio
Released on February 29, 2011
Format: Audiobook
Source: Library
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The Delight

A new year brings a new series readalong hosted by Anne @ Books of My Heart.  I’ve already enjoyed the Psy Changeling series, but as with the series last year, I was hazy on many of the earlier books.  I was eager to go back and get the beginning.  To really get a fresh start, I am re-reading in audiobook version for the first time and enjoying a new to me narrator in Angela Dawe.


So, Slave to Sensation…

Sascha Duncan, a member of the Psy race, is placed in charge of her family’s business interest, a deal to build homes targeted to sell to Changeling race in the Dark River Leopard Changeling pack lands.  Psy are cold and unemotional or they have their minds erased in rehab.  Sascha has hidden the fact that she is a broken Psy who not only feels, but feels deeply and sometimes others’ feelings.  She has hidden her issues behind the most amazing mental shields of her race and the fact that all the Psy believe her a low level psychic power and disappointment to her ambitious Cardinal power telepathic mother who is on the leadership council.  Sascha has no idea why she was slated to head up this deal, but she will do her best and it also makes a great excuse to avoid a certain council member who seems suspicious of her.  She knows her time is short.  When her shields fail, she will be exposed and plans to die.  But, what of the rascally panther who has taught her to really live and to play?

Meanwhile, a Psy serial killer is leaving a blood, broken trail of Changeling bodies and Dark River Leopard Alpha, Lucas Hunter has taken the lead in the hunt for the killer.  They know they are after a Psy because the Changelings of his pack and the nearby wolf pack smell the icy metallic stench of that race on the victims’ bodies.  The deal his company makes to build for the Duncans is his in.  He needs to get inside the Psy hive mind called the Psy Net through one of their own to hunt down the culprit even though the Council has been blocking the investigation.  But, Sascha is a surprise.  He senses she is not as cold as she would have others believe and several memorable encounters lead to further surprises.  In the end, they are from opposing races and lives, but there is something powerful connecting them.  Can he get her to help hunt the killer who has stolen another Changeling?  Can he get her to be with a Changeling?

This was a fabulous intro to the world of the Psy Changeling series set in near-future earth where humans are joined by two other races- one psychic and one shifter of many varieties in an uneasy peace.  The peace is about to be broken when the Psy secrets start crumbling and also a forbidden love affair between a Changeling alpha and a Psy who is more than she seems occurs.

I loved my reunion with so many old, favorite characters and with the way the series was set up.  I forgot a great deal so there was much that was fresh.  I enjoyed seeing some of the early hints for what is to come and also the little details that are still important later on.  Sascha and Lucas are an engaging pair, but the brilliance of the series is that all the characters are and I felt a new eagerness to keep going through all their stories.

The near-future setting is interesting with some tech, but also the way the adding of the other two races changes the course of things.  The Changelings are a combo of back to nature and cutting edge tech while the Psy are all business and tech with the humans falling somewhere between.  National borders are there, but the world is a smaller place.

Angela Dawe is so suited to this series and it was obvious from her opening lines.  I had not listened to her work before though I’ve heard much praise.  Well earned.  She voiced a large and varied cast and kept many distinct voices.  Her husky male voice and the playful way she had when Lucas spoke to Sascha was brilliant.  I didn’t want to quick listening each time I had the audio on.  Glad to have her doing the whole series.

All in all, it felt like a new book to me in many ways and I’m eager to keep going through the series.

Challenges Met

Library Love #14
Audio #110

About the Book
Slave to Sensation by Nalini SinghSLAVE TO SENSATION BY NALINI SINGH

In a world that denies emotions, where the ruling Psy punish any sign of desire, Sascha Duncan must conceal the feelings that brand her as flawed. To reveal them would be to sentence herself to the horror of “rehabilitation”–the complete psychic erasure of everything she ever was…

Both human and animal, Lucas Hunter is a Changeling hungry for the very sensations the Psy disdain. After centuries of uneasy coexistence, these two races are now on the verge of war over the brutal murders of several Changeling women. Lucas is determined to find the Psy killer who butchered his packmate, and Sascha is his ticket into their closely guarded society. But he soon discovers that this ice-cold Psy is very capable of passion–and that the animal in him is fascinated by her. Caught between their conflicting worlds, Lucas and Sascha must remain bound to their identities–or sacrifice everything for a taste of darkest temptation…

About Nalini Singh

I’ve been writing as long as I can remember and all of my stories always held a thread of romance (even when I was writing about a prince who could shoot lasers out of his eyes). I love creating unique characters, love giving them happy endings and I even love the voices in my head. There’s no other job I would rather be doing. In September 2002, when I got the call that Silhouette Desire wanted to buy my first book, Desert Warrior, it was a dream come true. I hope to continue living the dream until I keel over of old age on my keyboard.

I was born in Fiji and raised in New Zealand. I also spent three years living and working in Japan, during which time I took the chance to travel around Asia. I’m back in New Zealand now, but I’m always plotting new trips. If you’d like to see some of my travel snapshots, have a look at the Travel Diary page (updated every month).

So far, I’ve worked as a lawyer, a librarian, a candy factory general hand, a bank temp and an English teacher and not necessarily in that order. Some might call that inconsistency but I call it grist for the writer’s mill.

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.

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Debbie Haupt
Debbie Haupt
6 days ago

You know I’ve only read one of her books and it was a mystery not one of her beloved paranormal romances. Kudos to you for going back to the beginning 🙂

Sophia Rose
6 days ago
Reply to  Debbie Haupt

I love her mysteries, too. I’ve got one of those coming up, but le sigh… love her Psy Changeling series so much.

6 days ago

I should join the reread and listen to the audiobooks this time. I can’t start yet (too many review books), but maybe I’ll join this spring! Thanks for the review.

Sophia Rose
6 days ago
Reply to  Jen

I hesitated because of all my review commitments and the amount of books in the series, too, but I really did want to go back and get the earlier books and always meant to try them on audio. We’ll see how it goes about getting to all of them. Hope you can jump in at some point, Jen. 🙂

6 days ago

I listened to this a few years ago and really enjoyed it. I have read a few more and then got sidetracked to other books and stopped although I have read a few of her contemporary romances and a really good mystery by her since then. Glad you enjoyed it all over again!

Sophia Rose
6 days ago
Reply to  Lorna

Oh, the sidetracking… it gets to me, too. 🙂 I have so many series that I’ve left in the middle and need to go back for. I love the audio voice so I am looking forward to listening to this series this year.

Angie Elle
5 days ago

I read this first book a while ago and really enjoy it, then never going back to read more. I really want to remedy that, as the series still felt unique to me.

Great review, Sophia! It seems like you enjoyed it even more on reread.

Sophia Rose
5 days ago
Reply to  Angie Elle

I’ve done that so often with series and it wasn’t about not loving it. 🙂

Thanks, I really did, Angie.

Carole Rae
5 days ago

Awww I just read this a little bit ago too! Soooo good. I can’t wait to read the next one!

Sophia Rose
5 days ago
Reply to  Carole Rae

Definitely want to push forward with the next book. 🙂

3 days ago

I’m enjoying this series for the first time for me. I’m glad you tried audio, I LOVE Angela Dawe. She’s a top 5 narrator for me! Great review Sophia, I hope you can join us for a COYER chat sometime!

Sophia Rose
3 days ago
Reply to  Berls

Yay for hitting it for the first time, Berls! I think it is funny that I’m doing it for an audio- series readalong in a year because the first time I read this series was for a one-year series challenge. 🙂 I can’t wait to see what you think of all the characters and romances to come. I have a feeling that Angela Dawe will become one of my favs, too.
I’m planning to join for my review month. 🙂

Lover of Romance
3 days ago

What a great review of this reread for you here. I can’t wait to do a re read of this one, which will probably be this weekend. I just have such a soft spot for these changelings. Their pack dynamics are the best.

I do love having that fresh feeling in reading a favorite series especially these early books I haven’t read in so long and I am so happy you are getting so much of this read a long.

Sophia Rose
2 days ago

Thanks, Renee! It was a delicious walk down memory lane with Sascha and Lucas. It had been so long and so many characters and situations later that I had many lovely surprises. Yay, glad you’re going to jump back in on the series, too.

Anne - Books of My Heart

Excellent review! Thanks for joining me on this journey.

Sophia Rose
20 hours ago

Glad to participate. This is a fun one.