Psy/Changling Read-along: Bonds of Justice (+Contest)

NSingh-Bonds of Justice

Psy-Changeling Readalong.2013In Bonds of Justice we finally see what would happen if a Psy couldn’t leave the PsyNet. And I know there have been some spoilers floating around about who the Ghost is but I for one DO NOT want to be spoiled. And I’m sure there are a few other people that don’t want to be spoiled either…so please respect our wishes and don’t give anything away in the comments.

-Casey and Courtney

NSingh-Bonds of JusticeMax Shannon is a good cop, one of the best in New York Enforcement. Born with a natural shield that protects him against Psy mental invasions, he knows he has little chance of advancement within the Psy-dominated power structure. The last case he expects to be assigned is that of a murderer targeting a Psy Councilor’s closest advisors. And the last woman he expects to compel him in the most sensual of ways is a Psy on the verge of a catastrophic mental fracture…

Sophia Russo is a Justice-Psy, cursed with the ability to retrieve memories from men and women so twisted even veteran cops keep their distance. Appointed as Max’s liaison with the Psy, she finds herself fascinated by this human, her frozen heart threatening to thaw with forbidden emotion. But, her mind filled with other people’s nightmares, other people’s evil, she’s standing on the border between sanity and a silken darkness that urges her to take justice into her own hands, to become judge, jury…and executioner…

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:

It’s official, the PsyCouncil has officially split. Nikita, Anthony and possibly Kaleb are against PurePsy and understand that Silence is falling. They are ready to make plans for when Silence actually does fall. Henry, Shossanna and Tatiana are still in support of Silence and want to do everything to ensure it lasts. A Psy civil war may be on the horizon.

Main Characters:

Max Shannon – Max is one of those rare humans who has a natural block against the Psy. As a police officer this ability lets him catch the bad guys the Psy don’t want caught but it also means he won’t ever advance beyond detective. Max is very good at what he does and but he knows that the Psy don’t like him so when he gets a request to work for a Psy Councilor he is very surprised. But if it puts him back into contact with the sexy J-Psy he just met he’s all for it.

…He’d almost missed the lush softness of her mouth. Except he hadn’t.

Max’s goal is to find out who is killing Nikita’s advisers and he has a lot of obstacles in his way. The first being that he doesn’t trust Nikita. The second being he doesn’t trust Psy at all. But Sophie begins to change his view on the Psy.

You’re a J. Cops and Js have always gone together. – Max to Sophie

And while Max and Sophie are on the hunt for the killer, the serial killer Max locked up is on the hunt for Sophie. It’s a matter of life and death, but Max is not going to lose his Psy when he just found her.

I’ll make sure she’s never alone. – Max about Sophie

Sophie Russo – Sophie is  J-Psy , meaning she can go into the minds of criminals, get information out of them and then project it to other people. There also tends to be a nasty side-effect of being a J, one that only criminals ever suffer. Most J-Psy have a very short expiration date under Silence. And Sophie’s getting closer to the time when she will be rehabilitated.

The next time she walked into a Center, only a shambling, empty-eyed shell would walk back out.

Unfortunately, Sophie made quite the impression on a serial killer she helped interview. And now he’s escaped and he means to have her. And Sophie knows she won’t survive the encounter if he succeeds.

What would happen if someone disturbed touched your skin?If I was lucky, I’d go into shock. More likely, the avalanche of images would…kill me. – Max and Sophie

Sophie has had time to get used to her fate. But being partnered up with Max to work for Nikita has made Sophie believe she might be able to have a life. And she’s willing to fight for it.

I’m not giving you up. – Sophie to Max

Changeling Characters:

Dark River SentinelsSnowDancer Lieutenants
Nate – SeniorRiley – Senior
DorianIndigo
VaughnJudd Lauren – Psy
Mercy Jem
Clay

Psy Characters:

Ryan Asquith – Nikita’s assistant whose Silence is beginning to fracture. He began to work for Nikita because he hoped she would ‘go easier’ on him because her daughter (Sascha) broke Silence completely.

Andre Tulane – An adviser of Nikita’s. It is hinted that Andre’s Silence might be beginning to fracture.

Quentin Gareth – One of Nikita’s advisers, he had secretly joined the fanatic Psy cult, PurePsy.

Psy DesignationsPsy Council
Tp-Psy – TelepathyMarshall Hyde 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
J-Psy – Justice Psy

Human Characters:

River – Max’s kid brother who disappeared when they were both just kids.

Gerard Bonner –  A serial killer, the Butcher of Park Avenue, who has developed a deadly fixation on Sophie.

Subplots:

Kaleb is searching for someone. But who?

Nikita seems to attract Psy who are having problems maintaining their Silence.

Hints for the Ghost:

No new real clues.

Glossary of Terms

Sensitive – A Psy who can pick up thoughts through touch.

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

Discussion

  1. A Psy who can’t drop out of the Net but has still broken Silence? What do you think it means?
  2. And what about the NetMind and the DarkMind? Do you like how that was expanded on?
  3. What do you think Nikita’s evolving? Do you like it?
  4. We also got a bit more background into those that decided to follow Silence, and we’ve heard about the Psy serial killers, but this is our first look at a human serial killer in this world? Did you like it? Was he a scary enough villain?

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: what do you think about our first Psy who can’t leave the PsyNet? 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 Courtney 33 Articles
I teach Special Education and have three demented dogs. Between my students all day and my dogs all night my stress relief is reading. It is the only thing that keeps me from going crazy. Or should I say from going crazier? I read anything but I prefer fantasy, sci-fi and steampunk. I also love urban fantasy and historical romances. If it has dragons and magic, vampires and werewolves, crazy machines and corsets or aliens and spaceships then I’m happy. Mix in a Scotland laird or two every once in a while and I’m ecstatic!

4 Comments

  1. I was late to start Nalini’s Changling series, so I was able to read most of the books one right after the other. While I love this world and any book adding to it, I have to admit that I wasn’t as excited about this book. I thought the idea of a human cop and a psy in the net would not be in the same category as stories about the wolves or panthers. However, after reading this book I decided that I was wrong. It is still not my favorite in the series, but in general a great addition to Nalini’s world.

    I guess one of the things that was less appealing to me was that I thought Max wouldn’t be as strong or Alpha as the Psy or Changling men. I was pleasently surprised and happy to be wrong. He is a great male lead character! Determined, protective, smart and inquisitive. Also super duper hot! And while he is the ultimate “good guy” in a way (cop thing and all) he has a compelling dark side.

    I think that his character plays as a good counterpoint to the some what broken Sophie. I enjoyed the perspective of a Psy that was still in the Net and who stays in the Net. While characters like Faith, Judd and Sasha started out in the Net, they were all starting to rebel and ready to defect. Sophie knows she is breaking and no longer able to conform to the rules of the J-Psy but she can’t leave the Net completely. I liked how she found a way to remain in the Psy mainstream culture while still allowing herself freedom. Her individual struggle seems to be indicative of the struggle going on in the entire net.
    How to keep structure that allows the Psy to survive without completely denying emotion and the idea of the individual.

    I also found her involvement with Nikita to be a great addition. After Slave, Nikita remains a cold and hard Psy character. It’s nice that she is more then that and actually might have more emotion going on under the surface then previously let on.

    This book has one of the most interesting mystery plots of the series. Between the drama involved in getting autonomy for Sophie, her early childhood trauma and the whole seriel killer thing, it makes a compelling read. I was excited at the end to have a couple of characters that were still linked in to the Psy and Council but also on the side of the Changlings, Forgotten, etc. I have always hoped that Max and Sophie would be more invloved in future book plots.

    Another great surprise from Nalini.

  2. I absolutely agree with Whitney. I’m glad Sophie found a way to stay in the Net while still keeping her freedom from Silence. This book also has one of my favorite Kaleb scenes… showing up in the car! So awesome! I loved the suspense of the whole end of this book.

  3. A serial killer is a serial killer. Bonner’s justification for his acts is just as horrifying as any other. The sad truth is that there are people in the ‘real’ world who think and behave just like this, and that is scary to the max (sorry, didn’t mean that as a pun.) What was also scary was the cooperation by Bonners family, specifically his mother, in aiding his escape. That, too, is a reality. So, in my estimation, the horror of Bonner was quite effective.

    I liked the fact that Sophie could not leave the Net. Having her there means that it is not inevitable the the Psy race is doomed. I’m not a fan of genocide, even when it’s an internal conflict. The death throes would be catastrophic to the entire world, all species included.

    Nikita is a fascinating character. As the books have progressed it’s become more clear that there is more to her than meets the eye. She seemed such a pure product of Silence, but her keeping a child who is of a designation that is not admired, and not trying again for something more ‘appropriate’ gave me pause.

    As to the Netmind/Darkmind schism. To paraphrase Abe Lincoln – A mind divided against itself cannot stand.

    I’m looking forward to seeing how Sophia impacts the future of the net. Now that the last book in the arc is out and read, it’s obvious that the HEA for the whole world has not been reached yet. So she (and Max) still have a role to play in, what we hope will be, the reconstruction.

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