Psy-Changeling Read-Along: Hostage to Pleasure (+Contest)

NSingh-Hostage to Pleasure

Finally! Our discussion of Hostage to Pleasure is done. We are so sorry it’s taken so long! Real life kind of threw a wrench in our plans. We are back on track though and check out the calendar because we’ve updated some of the dates. We will finish this read-a-long before Heart of Obsidian is out! We are determined!!!

– Casey and Courtney

Now, as the deadly Psy Council tightens its grip, a rebel Psy scientist finds herself at the mercy of a changeling who has sworn vengeance against her kind…

Separated from her son and forced to create a neural implant that will mean the effective enslavement of her psychically gifted race, Ashaya Aleine is the perfect Psy–cool, calm, emotionless…at least on the surface. Inside, she’s fighting a desperate battle to save her son and escape the vicious cold of the PsyNet. Yet when escape comes, it leads not to safety, but to the lethal danger of a sniper’s embrace.

DarkRiver sniper Dorian Christensen lost his sister to a Psy killer. Though he lacks the changeling ability to shift into animal form, his leopard lives within. And that leopard’s rage at the brutal loss is a clawing darkness that hungers for vengeance. Falling for a Psy has never been on Dorian’s agenda. But charged with protecting Ashaya and her son, he discovers that passion has a way of changing the rules…

Here are the past discussions!

Slave to Sensation – the discussionBlaze of Memory – the discussion
Visions of Heat – the discussionBonds of Justice – the discussion
Caressed by Ice – the discussionPlay of Passion – the discussion
Wild Invitation – the discussionKiss of Snow – the discussion
Mine to Possess – the discussionTangle of Need – the discussion
Hostage to Pleasure – the discussionHeart of Obsidian – the discussion
Branded by Fire – the discussion

World/Society:

Things are becoming much more tense in the PsyNet. People are starting to pick sides between Silence and rebellion, even the Councilors. The Human Alliance is also starting to become a force in the world. And the Changelings are going to greater lengths to protect the world from the Psy.

Main Characters:

Dorian – Sentinel of DarkRiver who lost his baby sister in Slave to Sensation to Enrique. Dorian is a latent leopard, meaning he cannot shift. Dorian is determined to see Silence fall because he believes that Silence is what led to his sister’s death.

“Dorian had torn the killer apart with his bare hand, but that hadn’t quieted the rage in his animal heart, the torment in his human soul.”

Dorian promised to do a favor for Ashaya in return for her helping two human/Forgotten children get out of her evil lab assistant’s hands in Mine to Possess.

“…A woman he’d seen as a shadow in the darkness two months ago…and hadn’t been able to forget since.” – Dorian

Dorian also makes himself both captor and protector of Ashaya when she rescues herself from Ming LeBon’s clutches. And then he starts to fall for her even though he knows she is keeping a secret from him.

“I have you. I have Keenan. I’m happy.” Dorian to Ashaya

Ashaya – Ashaya Aleine is the head scientist of the Implant Protocol known as Protocol Il. She is a M-Psy who can ‘see’ things on a genetic level. She helps rescue two human children but secures a favor from Dorian during Mine to Possess.

“He’s on the side of good, the side that protects children, but I am ninety-nine percent certain that tonight, in the darkness, he almost pressed the trigger that would’ve ended my life. Perhaps that’s why I can’t stop Thinking about him. “ – Ashaya Aleine

When she ensures he has saved her son Keenan, she escapes from Ming LeBon herself. She then goes to any lengths to save her son…even going on international television to tell the public about the Protocol I…and an even more dangerous project.

“…I admit that every act, every movement, every plan, is for him. For my son. For Keenan.” – Ashaya Aleine

When it comes to her family’s safety she will risk anything. And she finds herself surprised to find out she considers Dorian as a part of that family.

“Dorian is in my blood, in my very veins…I don’t know what to call it, how to describe it. I just know that I would die for him.” Ashaya Aleine

Changeling Characters:

Dark River SentinelsSnowDancer Lieutenants
Nate – SeniorRiley – Senior
DorianIndigo
Vaughn Judd Lauren – Psy
Mercy
Clay

Psy Characters:

Aden – Works for Ming LeBon. Former student of Walker Lauren. Ordered by Ming LeBon to kill Judd Lauren. Member of the Arrow Squad.

Amara – Twin sister to Ashaya. Biological mother to Keenan.

Vasic – Works for Ming LeBon. The only true ‘traveller’ i.e. Teleporter in the PsyNet. Member of the Arrow Squad.

Zie Zen – A mentor of Ashaya and on paper the father of Ashaya’s son Keenan. He is a very important and high ranking member of the rebellion. He also has ties to Councilor Anthony Kyriakus.

Psy DesignationsPsy Council
Tp-Psy – TelepathySantano Enrique Anthony Kyriakus
Tk-Psy – TelekinesisMing LeBon
M-Psy – MedicalHenry Scott
F-Psy – ForesightShoshanna Scott
E-Psy – EmpathyNikita Duncan
Ps-Psy – PsychometricSantano Enrique Kaleb Krychek
Tk-Cell – Influence physical bodies on a cellular levelTatiana Rika-Smythe
Tk-V – Teleport

Subplots:

Henry and Shoshanna Scott are starting to drift apart on how to make sure Silence survives.

Henry Scott is starting to make a much more radical route trying to ensure Silence.

Ming LeBon is starting to think that the Arrow Squad is not as loyal to him as he previously thought. He is not entirely wrong.

Human Alliance is starting to make their presence felt. And not in a good way.

Kaleb Krychek is looking for someone on the PsyNet. Wonder who…

Glossary of Terms

Vocabulary from the previous novels can be found on their discussion pages:

The Omega Project – An old project started and funded by the Psy Council that, if worked, would wipe out all conception of the Psy unless it was approved by the council. It could easily be adapted to be used as a biological weapon against the Psy.

Discussion

Do you think Ashaya and Dorian work together?
What about Amara? Did you like her/hate her?
And what about the theme of sisters?
What about Kaleb? Where do you think his loyalties lie?
And what about Henry? Smart? Crazy? Both?

Giveaway

Thanks to Nalini Singh and the wonderful people at Penguin, I have a couple of every single novel in the Psy-Changeling series, and while some of them have been claimed, all of them haven’t. So this is what we’re going to do – we’ll be giving away all the books in one shot at the end of the Read-Along. That means you have 13 different chances to enter for any one of the Psy-Changeling novels. Join in on any of the discussions and you’ll automatically be entered to win.

To enter, all you have to do is answer this one question: Where do you think Kaleb’s loyalties lie? Don’t be afraid to answer any of the discussion questions above either!

The contest will stay open until July 1st, at which time we’ll determine the winners with help from this snazzy plug-in that Jackie has.

About Jackie 3273 Articles
I am a 30-something SAHM with two adorable boys and a supportive husband who is very tolerant of my reading addiction. I love to read and easily go through about a dozen books a month – well I did before I had kids. Now, not so much. After my first son was born, I began to take my hobby of reviewing a little more serious and started Literary Escapism to help with my sanity. I love to discuss the fabulous novels I’ve read and meeting all the wonderful people in the book blogging community has been amazing.

3 Comments

  1. As the series continues, the Psy/Changeling world becomes more detailed and feels more real.

    I think Dorian and Ashaya work as a couple, they are both pretty complex people. I didn’t like Amara, but I think pity describes my reaction, or at least better than hate. The sisters link is interesting, perhaps an indication of the problems inherent in silence. Ashaya is an interesting character, and learning more about Dorian is nice.

    Kaleb becomes more interesting in each book, also I think more likable. His loyalties are hard to pin down, but he doesn’t seem as afraid of changes to the current system. And he seems more wary of Henry than Nikita.

    Henry seems crazy to me, not really smart, but stubbornly trying to reinforce the current system. His silence seems to keep him from any type of really creative thinking. Both he and Shoshanna seem stuck in a bit of a rut. Determined to believe that everything can be solved by doing what has always been done and that the way it’s always been done is the only way.

  2. Dorian is my favorite Dark River sentinal, so needless to say I loved this book. He comes off as so fun and carefree but is one of the smartest and most intense leopards in the pack. Because he was unable to shift he felt he had to make up for this “lack” by becoming the best in many other ways. Oh! And can I please live in his house?! How beautiful.

    He and Ashaya are so sexy together. She is so in her head and he is able to bring her out of her shell by appealing to her mind first. Her dedication to her son and strength in breaking away from the net make her a perfect fit for him in my mind.

    This book deals a lot with family ties, both bad and good. Her sister, Amara, is an amoral and unfeeling person. But because Ashaya is not, she still shows her compassion and love. I think many people go through some lesser version of this in their own lives. Real strength is shown through treating people with kindness and compassion even when they make it very hard to do. Also, even though Keenan was born to Amara, he is Ashaya’s son. I think this is a good reminder that families are made up of people we chose to love as well as the ones we are born with. And doesn’t Dorian make a great father?!

    As the books progress we learn more and more about Kaleb. He becomes more nuanced and more likeable. I think that his loyalties lie with the Psy, but not necessarily Silence. I see him as sort of an Alpha of the Psy. He wants what will be best for his people and their survival and is trying to lead them down the better path. I think he understands that Silence is flawed and is looking for another way to save his people. While he seems completely Silent to others, I think he’s had to do this in order to become Council and change the structure from within. I think we will discover a deep well of emotion burried below the surface. I can’t wait!

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