Judgment by Denise Hall
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Human trafficking at it's finest is shown in this book. Cassie who's renamed as Mischief is forced into sexual slavery whilst she traveled in Italy. Cassie is a red-headed vixen who initially resists all forms of her training. The book goes through her early training and then the subsequent separation within the States from her Master.
This flipping back and forth of the story between her early years and ten years later was an okay technique. It was more disruptive for me. While I understand the usage of this, I tended to really want to know what was happening in present time. How would the storyline resolve? The sexual training, beatings and such were a secondary piece for me. This story is definitely a non-con with rape and breaking of a female. It's done in an erotic-ized manner so it's what I would consider BDSM fantasy. Nothing representative of the BDSM lifestyle, but a hot fantasy used for "spanking" time.
There were a few gaping holes in the logic of this plot which is why I left it at a 3 star. I couldn't understand why these "Personal" were so pampered in a way. It confused me. It is plausible for the Master to control food intake and how it's being given, it's odd for the Master to do a lot of other things for the "Personals". For example, the bathing, tucking into bed and dressing. I would expect the lessors or whatever the middle slaves are called to do the service work. I wouldn't expect any of the males Masters to do this for the slaves. Then again, if we are thinking of it as a Master to a pet, I can see why Ms. Hall went this way. Because my animal pet does not wash itself. I wash my animal. I personally don't dress my animal because I think it's ridiculous. However, I do know people who do that to their dogs and cats. I also know some dogs aren't able to handle the cold yet some humans persist to own these hairless dogs in freezing cold climates. These dogs have to wear sweaters and booties. It's hilarious to me. So if we are going through this train of thought, I can understand why the "Personals" are treated the way they are.
As for the present time in the police station, I found this to be lacking in investigative research. If a woman is this traumatized and there are obvious signs of physical abuse, why the HELL is there no female cop? I call bullshit on this one. They would have pulled in a female cop long before this. And I call bullshit on the male doctor. Females who are suspected to be in domestic violence or sexual abuse, they don't have male doctors touching them and checking them out. I would expect a female to be completing the exam. Remember, we're in a big city here, so to say, "budget cuts and lack of female personnel" is unbelievable. Yes, I'm well aware that I called this a fantasy, but I specified BDSM Fantasy. So the BDSM parts I'm not going to hold true to a BDSM standard. The rest of the story, I am going to question the holes.
Another thing that confused me. If Mischief's finger prints were not matched, how did they find a match so quickly to missing persons? I don't think it's really that fast to be done in less than a couple of days. The cops had no starting point. The missing person's database is huge in the States. To even go back a decade? Odd. It would have been better for me if they figured out who she was after the fact. That would have been a fun twist.
Diplomatic immunity was questioned in this story. Now, if the cops didn't realize Mischief was an American citizen, this part would have been more believable. Because Master Tane could claim this is his wayward wife who he wants back NOW. As a diplomat, in the States we can not interfere unless the country of origin waves the immunity. This doesn't happen often. The more common situation would be for the country of origin to recall the diplomat immediately.
While others may have been rooting for Mischief to be saved by the American law enforcement agency, I was actually rooting for Mischief to be found by her Master again. With the amount of damage done to Mischief already, would saving her and forcing her into a mental institution help? I don't think so. The blonde detective was right in his questions. I agree with his musings. I recommend this to BDSM readers who enjoy the Master/slavery non-con fantasy.
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