Sunday, August 7, 2011

Slave To Sensation by Nalini Singh

book jacketReview by Jan:

November 16th, 2011 will be our NYOBG Blog's first anniversary.  It has been truly awesome hearing all your recommendations and comments over the last few months, both in person at our meetings, and then on our blog.  As we approach our one year anniversary, I would like to honor one of my favorite paranormal romance authors by revisiting our February 2011 vote winner, Slave To Sensation by Nalini Singh.

I simply love this author's writing style, as our book group members will attest to because I frequently gush about her books.  Slave to Sensation is the first book in her Psy/Changlings Series.  It is a paranormal romance, and be ready to stretch your imagination into a world where changelings, humans, and a psychic race, coexist.  The changelings are passionate, pack communities, while the Psy are evolved humans who have shut off their emotions for the protection of their race.  The Psy also exist within a collective mind.  The contrasting communities, the opposing character traits, and how they relate to each other is well executed.  The heroine of this book, Sascha, is Psy.  Sascha feels emotion, a character flaw to the Psy which, if revealed, can result in her extermination.  The hero, Lucas, is a changeling who revels in emotion and wants Sascha to reveal hers.  The more he realizes she's not like her fellow Psy, the more interested he becomes.  There is a graphic murder mystery that fuels the story as well, with some intriguing twists and turns.  The conflict between the characters and their existing races is believable and supported by the world that Nalini has created.  The character development in this book, and every other one in this series, is phenomenal!

In short, I COULDN'T PUT THIS BOOK DOWN!  I know those words are often used to describe books, but for me that isn't a common occurrence.  Not with my crazy/hectic lifestyle, and with the pile of books waiting to be read and reviewed on my desk, that I usually skim because I don't have enough time for every book.  So, when I say I can't put a book down there is something pretty special about it.  

Be advised, while this book is heavy on the sci-fi elements, what drives the story is the romance between Sascha and Lucas---and the sensuality level is high.  (Chili Pepper On Fire)

I will check our catalog this week to see what we have of this series, and what we need to order.  Our romance, horror, and fantasy books are the most popular, therefore they are the most used, and the paperbacks sometimes don't survive our circulation rate for very long, so the collection fluctuates often.  I know we once had a lot more copies of this title for the book group read in February and now we only have two.  But I will order what I can of the rest of the series.  Meanwhile, if anybody has extra copies they would like to donate of any book in this series, I will gladly accept them!

Hope to see you in our Library someday soon,

Chili Pepper On Fire Please note... there is a Flaming Chili Pepper rating on this one!
            Our Chili Pepper Rating Explained


  1. Love this author. Read both of her series. Could not put them down either.

  2. Hey, Jan, why am I not surprised to see this book go up again? LOL Sarah got me hooked on this author with her post on Singh's angel series back a while. I wish I could remember our book discussion, but I do remember that I enjoyed it. I stopped around book three, or four. I should try to pick it back up again because there were characters she touched upon that I think will make great leads in future books.

  3. Does anyone know if she has writen the story with the Alpha from the wolf pack yet? He was...interesting. Can't remember his name though, but I remember him.

  4. On the alpha from the wolf pack... I believe his story is the latest release, Kiss Of Snow.

  5. Slave to Sensation was a fun little romp into mindless escapism literature. I tend to be drawn to urban fantasy a bit more than romance. Recently I have been getting into straight mysteries, without the chili peppers, only because they are a little less predictable. That said, I enjoyed this book and went on to read the rest of the series. I have had Hawke's story on the back of my mind to read, so I am glad to hear it is out. I agree Nalini Singh has a very engaging voice.

  6. I haven't read anything by Singh yet, but I have to say your review has piqued my interest! Am currently reading Black Hills by Nora Roberts for this month's meeting - but occasionally I find myself yelling during the chili pepper scenes "what about the dishes??"! So maybe a bit of an escapism piece, where I have to completely disassociate from reality for the entire plot will allow me to get more into the chili pepper portions too. Although I'm sure Psys have to do the dishes too...eventually...

  7. Oh, my, goodness... too funny!!! I don't remember any "dirty dish duty" in Slave To Sensation. Perhaps that may be one of the reasons I liked it so much. :o) Reality is what we have to deal with in real life! (I just had a little meltdown with my teenage son's bedroom---let's just say dirty dishes are tame in comparison!)

  8. I do seem to remember a scene where Sascha is doing something in the kitchen with the kits nipping at her ankles. This may or may not have been dishes . . .

    This was a great read and, although the villain was fairly obvious from early on, it kept me engaged as I was drawn into the two different worlds of the Psy and the Changelings. Sascha's reactions to "everyday" experiences are poignant and full of painful longing as she fights with her need for simple emotional and physical contact. She tries to suppress her feelings and be a good Psy, terrified of the consequences if she is discovered, but as she experiences more of the Changeling world she comes to realize how repressive and cruel the Psy world really is. She feels the "rightness" of the Changeling ideals of community and compassion, turning against the Psy to protect the Pack. The chili pepper rating was justified, but the sex scenes were so important to the story that they didn't seem out of place or gratuitous.

    This book is a good example of how the book group functions. It made the short list for several months running, but kept losing out to other titles. However, this gave you the chance to keep telling us how great it was, so eventually you wore us down with your enthusiasm and we chose it! I know that it is not exactly high literature, but I am more interested in reading for entertainment. I want a story and characters that make me turn the pages and enjoy the journey . . . and if there a few chili peppers thrown in, even better! :D

  9. Thanks for giving this book some extra time in the spotlight, Jan, it deserves it.

    Great comment, Sue! My reaction to the book was much the same. I, too, was taken by the way Sascha had inner turmoil over things we would take for granted. One of my favorite scenes, as I mentioned in the group discussion, is when she tastes a freshly baked chocolate chip oookie for the first time and is nearly overwhelmed by the sensation of eating chocolate. Unfortunately, if she were to give herself over to the delights of the experience, she would manifest non-Psy emotions. Imagine having to struggle with that.

    I also like what you said about how the book group functions. I kept voting for this book in the online voting each month, aiming to keep it on the list of contenders, so I was glad when it was finally chosen.

    I hope to read more in the series at some point, especially where the wolf pack is featured, and I'd like to try the Guild Hunter series, too. I definitely don't mind some angels who aren't really angelic.

  10. Sue, (and anonymous) what awesome comments about the book and book group! Thank you! As always, you make me smile.