Slave to Sensation
Berkley, 2006 (2006)
Read an Excerpt
Reviewed by Martina Bexte
ascha Duncan belongs to a ruling class called Psy who are '
known to be icily controlled, inhumanly practical and impossible to push to violence. They are leaders in government and business, eclipsing both humans and changelings, races which allow their animal natures to rule them. With mental capabilities running from telepathy to foresight, telekinesis to psychometry, the Psy consider themselves a step above the evolutionary ladder. In keeping with their nature, they base all their decisions on logic and efficiency. According to the PsyNet, their mistake rate is close to nil. The Psy are perfect in their Silence
'. But Sascha knows that she is flawed; she has fallen victim to emotion and has painstakingly hidden her secret for most of her life. But her condition is deteriorating and she knows that it is only a matter of time before PsyNet condemns her to a rehabilitation facility. Not even her powerfully connected mother will be able to sway the decision - once Sascha is considered a risk, she will disappear within the bowels of the facility and be considered as good as dead.
er business liaison with Lucas Hunter, the ruling alpha of the DarkRiver leopard pack, gives her a temporary respite from PsyNet scrutiny. As she and Lucas work closely together to plan future housing projects that would benefit all the ruling clans in California, she begins to understand the changelings' need and desire to display emotion. While she fights hard to deny her attraction to the alpha leopard, Lucas realizes that Sascha is his life mate and vows he will do everything in his power to make her his. Adding to their taut situation is the news that a serial killer is kidnapping and torturing changeling females. There has always been territorial conflict between Hunter's clan and the SnowDancers, the wolf shape shifters whose domain borders DarkRiver lands. Once the SnowDancers realize that the killer is a Psy and that this time it's one of their females who’s been taken, they are out for blood. The wolves vow that the Psy reign of superiority must come to an end even if it means all out war that the shape shifters would very likely lose. But Sascha is convinced that there is another way to ferret out the identity of the killer without further bloodshed. As a Cardinal Psy, Sascha can initiate undetected entry into PsyNet. With careful probing, she hopes to identify the killer, free the wolf female and assure that justice is served. However, she also understands how dangerous her plan is and that her encounter with another Cardinal Psy could well prove deadly.
he story is a bit slow to start as Singh delves into her particular world's complicated mythology. The blend of human hybrids called Psy and various shape shifter species is also unusual and one that at first didn't work for me. But as Singh continues methodically unraveling the cultural and world-view differences of the emotionally motivated cats and wolves vs. the incredibly unemotional Psy who disdain anything that is not
, as well as delving into the fragile balance between each society, the story takes on a fascinating life of its own. In
Slave to Sensation
, Singh has created a fresh, intriguing and thought-provoking mythology and a very appealing cast of characters who harbor plenty of secrets. It's clear that there are many more revelations waiting in the wings and I look forward to the next installment from this talented writer.
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