Review: Slave to Sensation by Nalini Singh

Slave to SensationSlave to Sensation by Nalini Singh
Book #1 in Psy-Changeling
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Publication Date: September 5th, 2006
ARC provided by Netgalley and Berkley

Synopsis from Goodreads: Nalini Singh dives into a world torn apart by a powerful race with phenomenal powers of the mind-and none of the heart.

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.

Angie’s Review – 3.5 Skulls – B

Anytime a new book is released in a series I’ve been eyeing, it makes me want to start it even more! After all, is there a better time to start reading a new series than when you have a front row seat to the hype surrounding its latest release even after fourteen books? Couple that with the fact that some of the gals around here rave about the Psy-Changeling series, and that was enough for me to jump on the bandwagon.

I thought the premise of this book was very innovative. You can tell the world building, already so intricate, has miles to go before it’s fully developed. I find that thrilling as a reader, because it means even in the next book there are going to be lots of surprises in store. It also made me feel breathless, because I was constantly being given new information. It set the pace for the entire book at a steady sprint, and it maintained it to the end.

I enjoyed Lucas and Sascha’s characters. Lucas, while incredibly scarred from witnessing his parent’s slaughter, was now alpha of a pack and responsible for the lives and well-being of many. He was strong and took the time to think things through. And I really liked that when Lucas realized Sascha was his mate, he knew it wasn’t the right time to tell her, so he kept it to himself. That alpha that was ingrained in him did get heavy handed at times, but I thought his motivations were reasonable, and I could see why he acted the way he did even if I didn’t always agree with it. He was able, to a degree, to reason with the panther inside him, and I thought that was interesting. Sascha is probably one of the more interesting heroines I’ve been introduced to lately. A lot of her decisions came from a place of fear, and while that’s not always an easy authentic sell, it really worked here. Her entire world was falling apart, and everything she’d been taught was a lie. It was like she was facing her very own apocalypse and was learning to navigate this new world all by herself. She may have been surrounded by people, but there was no one she was able to use as a resource when it came to her status as a Psy. While I did feel the chemistry between Sascha and Lucas, I didn’t feel the connection as strongly as I think I was supposed to. I think the ‘mates for life/nothing can come between us’ bond may have been relied on a bit too much here, and that part of the story fell flat for me. Having said that, I was surprised by how erotic this book was. From the get-go, and almost every single scene following, the sexual chemistry was definitely established.

This book had a whole host of interesting secondary characters, and we got quite a bit of information about them without it feeling like it was bogging down the story. The most notable to me was Hawke, alpha of a rival pack of Lucas’. I am excited to read more about him. Also, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the PsyNet, Sascha’s psychic connection to her people. The PsyNet really felt like a character all on its own, and I am so intrigued to see how that is going to develop in future installments.

This book may have had a few flaws, but it kept me riveted while I was reading. I find the entire set up intriguing, and I can’t to see where things go from here!

Rating: ☠  ☠  ☠  ☠  ☠  + ½

Series Reading Order:

1. Slave to Sensation
2. Visions of Heat
3. Caressed by Ice
4. Mine to Possess
5. Hostage to Pleasure
6. Branded by Fire
7. Blaze of Memory
8. Bonds of Justice
9. Play of Passion
10. Kiss of Snow
11. Tangle of Need
12. Heart of Obsidian
13. Shield of Winter
14. Shards of Hope (Expected Publication Date: June 2nd, 2015)

Thank you to BERKLEY and Netgalley for providing a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

© 2015, Badass Book Reviews. All rights reserved.