Book two in the Love-Bots series. A man built for sex… A woman who wants more… Freedom fighter Shani Brown is determined to drag the ungrateful Royce back to her team in Seattle. Despite his denial of mistreatment, she wants to give him a chance at a better life. Due to her horrific past as an unlicensed love-bot, Shani never plans to have sex again. But Royce’s makers punish him remotely with crippling pain. His only escape is to orgasm. Never one to turn her back on a job, Shani soon finds herself servicing him—and soon after, caring for him. Love-bot Royce Harden wasn’t looking to be rescued, especially not from the San Francisco BDSM club where he was having a perfectly good time. But rescued he was—by a hellcat bent on delivering him to her people. As Royce starts to trust Shani, he begins to dream of freedom. But freedom comes with a price. Royce must face his vanity, his makers, and even the loss of his sexual upgrades if he’s going to be the man Shani deserves.
Upon reading the title of this book I knew I was going to be in for something very unique....and the storyline is indeed unique. In the not so distant future people are being reanimated and technologically enhanced to pleasure clients. They're practically slaves in that they're under full control of the company that created them.
Enter Shaniqua Brown, a former love-bot who was abused and gained freedom after being rescued. She now rescues other love-bots for a small group of Steins to show them another way to live. She's experienced a lot of misery during her existence which has made her steer clear of sex and love. We only discover bits and pieces of what things were like for her and I truly wish we could've learned more about her history. She's a likable character who's tough but has a caring heart hidden under layers of hurt and I respected her intense belief in rescuing other love-bots.
Royce Harden, and what a clever name that is in his profession, doesn't exactly want to be rescued. He likes the adoration and the abilities he has and fights Shani at first. He uses every bit of training to charm her, which she sees through, in his efforts to return to his keepers. As the two interact and start having feelings for one another, Shani slowly convinces him there's more to him than his talents. The sexual interactions between them are a bit one-sided at first due to Shani's fears, but they're a necessity to keep Royce from experiencing excruciating pain due to a chip his owners put in him to keep him close. That doesn't make the interludes any less sexy though. The affection between them builds slowly and is sweet to see. Royce is good dealing with people whereas Shani is brusque and it's his way with people that help them on their journey. I enjoyed seeing the human side to him when he wasn't using his talents and his surprise at learning Shani cared for him even after his enhancements were removed brought a small tear to my eye for what he's experienced in life.
This was an enjoyable read that was over way too soon. The storyline was unique and gave an interesting twist to how we perceive the myth of the Frankenstein monster. The characters were likable and fairly well-developed, although I definitely wish we had more of a glimpse into both Shani and Royce's pasts to better understand who they are now. I also want to add that even if you haven't read the previous book in this series, it won't affect your enjoyment of Studenstein. So go forth and immerse yourself in this thought-provoking world Daisy Harris has created.
My rating for this is a B+
*I received this book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion.