Review: Wicked Beloved

Wicked Beloved
Wicked Beloved by Susanne Saville

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A Tellurian pacifist who also is against animal skins for clothing is sorely misplaced on a brutal alien planet. She’s not there to fight a cause; she is a slave abducted by aliens and taken to a world where violence and slavery are entwined. The Tellurian slave possesses no name, other than slave. She is waiting at the slave pound to be either purchased or put down.

Dzer-Jin Vonn is an assassin who loathes going inside the Kefu port’s chattel shelter because it contains all broken slaves. It’s similar to going to the humane society and seeing all the different animals begging to be adopted. If the dog or cat isn’t adopted, they are killed. Unfortunately for the slaves in this alien world, the same rule holds true. Vonn is attracted to a Tellurian slave because they are the most similar to his humanoid shape. Plus, she’s a red head who still retains all her fiery temper. This in itself is unusual since most slaves at this shelter are all broken. Vonn ends up buying the slave and naming her Ahno’ee. Ahno’ee is a bloody mess as her body has been sorely whipped and cut.

While the story is focused on Vonn building a relationship with Ahno’ee, the world building is a bit lacking. It’s sketchy and would be better if there was more detail added. Still, it’s an intriguing society of interest. Specifically, the BDSM undertones are attractive. It seems in this alien world, owning one of the indigenous population is a big taboo. The next best thing is a Tellurian which is an Earthling. Even better, Earthlings are sexually different in that they need no foreplay to thrust into them. They are perfect for sexual gratification. It also appears the men in this society, ones like Vonn who is high level assassin, are sexually stimulated by blood play, knife play and whippings. The fear and submission from a female slave drives them into a sexual frenzy. This dark sensuality is dubious consensual yet quite arousing.

It would have been nice to learn more about the assassin guild. Learning about this alien culture would have enhanced the story. The little tidbits seen through Ahno’ee’s eyes were barely enough to satisfy. Learning about the different guilds and how they rank would have helped explain parts of the story. As it was left, it seemed to gloss over the holes in world construction. Learning more about the politics as well as what the world looked like would have also helped create a more robust world.

The BDSM scenes in this story are hawt. The forced sexual slavery coupled with rough SM is a delight. The blood play between Vonn and Ahno’ee demonstrated sensuality rather than brutality. This was a very nice touch. Like Vonn, the reader wishes for more. Vonn is too much the gentleman towards Ahno’ee. He treats her like a beloved pet when he really wants to whip, paddle, cut and sexually violate her roughly. He won’t leave scars as there is a magical cream which heals the skin completely. He suppresses his hunge because he doesn’t want her to fear him. Here’s hoping to her growing to enjoy it soon because Vonn’s sexual appetite is delightful to watch. The story ends in a predictable happily ever after yet leaves room for further development. Once can only hope Ms. Saville returns to this world with more installments of sensual sadist sex. This speculative fiction book is recommended to kinky readers who enjoy a hot Dom who knows how to wield a sharp knife.

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