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The Breaker's Concubine - Ann Mayburn

Things are bad on the planet Jensia. The female birth rate is down, so rebels are stealing women for their evil uses. The planet Kyrimia is a the biggest source of zanthin, fuel that enables ships to travel at light speed. Something happened thousands of years ago that almost destroyed Kyrimia. Kyrimains closed off their world to off worlders and very little is known about them.

Desperate to find zanthin, Prince Devnar of Jensia, raids a Kyrimain ship only to be captured for the use of the Royal empress of Kyrimia. Vowing to escape at the first chance he gets, he is drugged and forced to feel pleasure. When they can’t break him, they turn him over to the best breaker on Kyrimia, Melania.

Melania is a talented breaker, but she has fought for everything in her life after being born with the birth defect of two different colored eyes. Growing up she also never developed into the curvy woman her country prizes. A caste system is in place on the planet and at any time, you can find your life taken from you. Melania knows this and does everything by the book, but also has a kind and good heart.

Breakers are trained to help abused, reluctant and scared Novices to get past their fear of being a concubine and to embrace their inner sexuality. The ultimate gift is to be a treasured Concubine or to own a Concubine. Melania is a breaker that builds up these Concubines, but at no time can she orgasm or feel pleasure with them even as she has sex, oral sex and many other acts with them. Off worlders are never in this program and it is against the regulations, punishable by death.

When Melania and Devnar meet, there is instant attraction, but both cannot give into those feelings. Devnar because he wants freedom. Melania because she wants to live. It doesn’t help that Melania has been promised her own Concubine if she can get Devnar prepared in 30 days and he also catches the Empresses attention. On top of that Devnar’s race bonds with their mates, so he has a fear he will bond with his captors and not want to leave.

Whoosh! There are a lot of little details I had to get out there before I could tell you what I thought.

Right off I loved Devnar, but he isn’t the greatest prince in the world. His planet isn’t the best place to live and it doesn’t sound like the planet is safe, especially since his sister was taken raped and bonded with a lot of men. But I give him props for hunting all those men down and killing them. But he is after all robbing a supply ship even if it is a trap. When they capture him, they keep him and two of his men, killing the rest who did not escape. There were hints also that the men share their women with other men who have bonded with them because there is such a shortage of women. It never came to much fruition.

Melania had my sympathy over being shunned over eye colors and under development, but I couldn’t gage just how under developed she was. Often she was compared to a young boy for her lack of breasts and short petite size. But during the love scenes, she obviously had breast, just not big “jugs” like all the other women in the book I guess. Melania has a kind spirit, but in the world she lives, she has had to be the dominant for her job. In her off time, she chooses dominants as her sexual partners.

So when these two get together, sparks fly. It’s really not a long story, but they jump way to fast into a love relationship. Devnar knows shortly after being with her that she is his mate. It takes Melania longer to accept it. It didn’t seem to flow when Devnar was still collared by Melania, but he was dominating her. I just couldn’t buy the switch or feel that it naturally took place. Many times Devnar could have overcome Melania. Not sure how far he could have escaped, but there were tons of times he could have initiated it.

The story has an underlining political plot that was interesting, but not as involved as I wished it to be. Overall I liked the story, but could have seen this being a longer novel with more intrigue, danger and of course more sex.