Enslave Me Sweetly by Gena Showalter

ShowalterEnslaveMeSweetlyWhy I Read It: I sinfully enjoyed her Gena Showalter‘s other book, Awaken Me Darkly.

Where I got It: A review copy from the publisher (thanks!).

Who I Recommend This To: Like aliens? Assassins? Kick-ass female leads? Descriptive sex scenes? Gadgets, hand-to-hand combat, and mouthy remarks? Then ignore the cover and check this book out.

Narrator: Justine Eyre

Publisher: Simon and Schuster (2013)

Length: 8 hours 34 minutes

Series: Book 2 Alien Huntress

While this is Book 2 in the series, it works fine as a stand alone. Book 1 is Awaken Me Darkly.

Eden Black is the golden-haired, golden-skinned Raka alien adopted daughter of Michael Black, a man who runs a group of security personnel, and when needed, assassins. Eden, who has trained with the agents since she decided to stop being a spoiled brat, has an assignment that doesn’t go as planned. In fact, the term ‘horribly wrong’ could be applied to the fuster cluck she finds herself in at the beginning of the book. She, Michael, and entourage have been hunting a group of aliens who capture and export humans offworld to be sold as slaves to other aliens. This screw up could cost them all their hard work up to this point. In fact, Michael assigns a human assassin, Lucius, to partner with Eden while they try to salvage this mess and infiltrate the slavers.

First, let me chat about the cover. If you read the review for Awaken Me Darkly, then you know that I found that cover misleading as well. At no time is there any leopard print negliges anywhere in the book. Yes, there is sex, and sexy clothes, and some ladies tied up – but not in the fun, kinky sex kind of way. There’s plenty of weapons, future tech, practically dressed heroine in this book, and none of that awesomesauce is portrayed by this cover. Why? If you got a decent answer, let me know.

OK, now onto this fast paced alien hunter adventure. Eden has a few issues, which I always like in a main character: her parents were killed when she was very small; her race has been hunted by humans because of their golden skin and hair (it is gold and so they end up skinned for profit); she feels the need to be the best at everything. Then enter Lucius, a well muscled man with issues of his own. There is plenty of sexual tension the first half of the book and then some very nice steamy sex scenes in the second half (tho the book ends with a sweet, not-so-descriptive sex scene that was kind of ‘eh’ for me). But that romance subplot stays subplot and the action-packed hunt for the slavers is the primary plot.

Lots of bad guys inhabit this book, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that some of them were really bad, some sort of bad (in a polite way), and still a few seemed to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. I like a variety in bad guys and for them to be a little harder to pick out. Some of them were in it for the money, some for the power, and some for the lust. There was one bad guy that I felt got off too easy and I wish the author had written it so Eden had rearranged his face instead of trying to hook him up on a date (but I turned my morality and thoughts off so I could finish the book).

There’s some cool tech, including some fun weapons. There is also the method by which the slavers, and other off-worlders, get off world. I didn’t care for this bit of ‘technology’ too much because it was, well, lacking tech, and science, and physics, and had no basis in anything we know about inner-galactic travel. But again, I turned off my brain because I was listening to this book for the action and the sex, not the science and science-based theory in plot format. The author also built in some differences between humans and aliens and differences between aliens. This becomes important when the bad guys try to knock Eden unconscious and whisk her away. Hehe! They were in for a surprise!

Over all, I enjoyed Awaken Me Darkly a bit more as I felt the plot was tighter knit, except for the instant love the two main characters suffered from. Here, there was no insta-love (thank you Showalter!). So, if you are looking for action-based plot, with a lead female that is strong, a little twisted, and makes a few mistakes, this is a pretty fun read. Oh, and there is this one sex scene that is very well done, just saying.

The Narration: While Justine Eyre has a luscious voice for Eden, it was the exact same voice for the main female from Awaken Me Darkly. So, at first I thought I had misread or misunderstood the book’s blurb and thought the book was about that main character (Mia Snow), but it wasn’t. While I figured that out pretty quickly from the narrative, I spent the first quarter of the book picturing Eden dressed and looking like Mia. But if I set that aside, then Eyre was a delight to listen to, giving Eden a full range of emotions and providing a deep sensuality when the story called for it. She had a variety of voices for the males and the other ladies and provided accents for the aliens (albeit they sounded like Earth accents, but it must be difficult to come up with alien accents if the author doesn’t go into detail as to how that particular race sounds like).

What I Liked: Eden has issues; cool guns; righteous task of bringing down slavers (I could hate the bad guys without any qualms); the sexual tension and most of the sex scenes; the ending where we find out the truth concerning a piece of Eden’s past and her reactions.

What I Disliked: The cover!; some of the tech was far fetched; the last sex scene was rather blase (after the bar had been set so high previously in the book).

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Tez Says

5 thoughts on “Enslave Me Sweetly by Gena Showalter”

    1. Yeah. I wish they would reflect the SF aspect of this book. It’s almost as if whoever was in charge of covers was ashamed of the SF aspect – or wasn’t informed that the book was SF.

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