We are so delighted to welcome Alicia Cameron to Sinfully today, with this excellent first book in her new slavefic Trilogy, Subjection: Demoted Book One. She has popped in to tell us why she loves Slavefic’s so much and as a huge fan myself, I’m all ears.
You can also enter the giveaway for your chance to win an eBook from Alicia Cameron’s back catalogue listing with Forbidden Fiction.
Slavefic: Why I Love It by Alicia Cameron
At the heart of slavery is power, and I love playing with power.
I’ve been fascinated with slavery as a concept since I was far too young to be thinking about it. I remember taking an unusual interest in history for this very reason, and my make-believe games always had an unusual amount of kidnapping and masters and servants.
As I grew older, I realized that I didn’t have to limit myself to the actual historical horrors of slavery, and could instead construct worlds of my own where these dynamics of power could be explored, manipulated, and used however I wanted them to be. I could inflict my cruelties and explore my dark desires without guilt, without real-world implications. Once I realized there were others out there who shared this unique interest, I was elated.
On a purely sexual note, there is the image of one person in chains, on his knees, longing for a gentle touch or caress. The master can call the shots in bed, playing the typical role, or perhaps the roles can be reversed, and the slave can become king between the sheets. It’s taboo no matter how you look at it, and taboo is exciting. Fiction can take us to places we can’t get in real life—would you be the domineering master, or the subjected slave?
Power comes associated with a number of other tropes. Betrayal. Forgiveness. Compassion. Abuse. So many elements of normal human life, heightened by the dire circumstances in which they occur. Every exchange between people involves an exchange of power, but most people downplay the importance. Few people like to be reminded that they are not the one in power.
In slave fiction, power becomes explicit. It can’t not be discussed. There is the essential relationship between slave and master, but it also highlights other areas of power. Perhaps the master is technically in control, but is the slave always subservient? I like slaves who have power. A completely helpless and destroyed character is sad, moving, even, but boring. A slave might have power over his master by managing the household, by knowing secrets, or by simply being so deeply in love that both are thrust out of their respective positions and into something new. A slave and master can fight the system that keeps them from being together as equals, they can pretend it doesn’t exist, but it will always intrude. Both parties must be aware of this to survive; both parties must negotiate how it will work for them if they want to thrive.
When I write slavefic, I see it as an intensification of the normal world we live in and the emotions that we feel. In any relationship, both partners can expect love, joy, suffering, fear, and confusion. In a master and slave relationship, these things are heightened, elevated to the level that might result in death, torture, or irrefutable separation.
Subjection (Demoted #1) by Alicia Cameron
Title ~ Subjection (Demoted #1)
Author ~ Alicia Cameron
Publisher ~ Forbidden Fiction
Published ~ 28th April 2015
Genre ~ M/M Romance, Slavefic, Dystopian, Non Con.
In a world where intellect and achievement are valued above all else, a young man risks everything to save his brother from a life of slavery. Thrown into a harsh, unyielding world where slaves are treated as less than animals, Sascha struggles to come to terms with everything he knows being ripped away from him, but a life of success could never prepare him for his life as one of the Demoted. Sinking lower and lower, Sascha begins to lose hope, but the whim of a mysterious, wealthy man has the potential to change all that.
Cashiel has a dark history that he guards carefully. Between family and business and politics, he rarely has time for a slave, much less a lover. But when he sees a young man who reminds him of the very history he is trying to escape, he makes an impulse decision that he’s not sure whether to regret or not. The slave could expose everything, or he could be the most valuable asset that Cashiel has ever acquired.
Cashiel and Sascha share desires, hopes, and a home. Each man is limited by status, hindered by history, and desperate to succeed. The question is, will that be enough?
I know it may sound strange, but, I love books that get me so emotionally riled up I want to fling my kindle at the wall. And …You know that sick feeling you get in the pit of of your stomach, when the anticipation of something coming up is just too much, and you really DON’T want to read it… But …at the same time you really DO want to read it! Yeah… I love that too! Some readers will totally get what I’m saying and some readers will run a mile before picking up a book that’s going to make them feel so anxious. For me, it means the author has done a bloody good job of weaving a cleverly laid out plot with words that connect me emotionally to the characters and their story. Subjection is that book, it’s intense, compelling reading and I was totally engrossed. It won’t be for everyone as the content is harrowing and I had more than a few histrionic hissy fits. It’s dark, it’s cruel and it hurts, but you read on in hope.
I am totally invested in the lives of these two men, this being the first part in a trilogy, and even though I wanted to bitch slap Cashiel through the most part of this book for being an insensitive bastard, I kind of forgave him a tiny bit when we were introduced to the Queen of all bitches… his mother! Oh. Yes… I would, without a doubt do time for offing her. But Sascha… my god… if there is ever a character I just wanted to take in my arms and hug… that poor boy is the one.
We join this world that Alicia Cameron has created on the Peace Day celebrations which commemorate the end of the fourth World War. Technology is advanced and diseases are pretty much eradicated. With that comes the financial burden of an ever growing population which puts a strain on the governments resources. The solution… to demote those who are likely to be unproductive members of society. De-humanised for being in the ‘lower range of mental functioning’ and considered ‘property for tax purposes’
Sascha’s selfless act of love for his twin brother, hacking into the system that would have seen Abriel demoted was heart-breaking. Sascha was a wilful boy of above intelligence and Abriel, was the exact opposite.
Learning Sacha’s story as a child then going through the re-education centre and then as a whore, was a sucker punch to the gut, I just wanted to cry. His spirit… beaten, tortured and fucked out of him. What we see is a frightened shell of his former self, yet despite this he still has enough strength of character to realise his life depends on Cashiel. His one chance at survival. Only now his fear is that his life is at the whim of a cold, callous and uncaring master. And even though Cashiel doesn’t abuse him or even want him physically, which is distressing in itself for Sascha, so starved of affection… all he wants is for Cashiel to show him some, or any, recognition, kindness… or even just a sign that he might want to keep him.
Cashiel is an infuriating man and I have to be honest and say he totally pissed me right off. The man has no compassion. However there was something about Sascha and his pitiful existence in the brothel… plus the aptitude he has for numbers, that spurred his impulsive decision to buy the slave. His objective purely selfish, with every intention of getting rid, as soon as the celebration was over. Cashiel does redeem himself slightly, and we do see glimpses, before he goes and blows it again.
He knows Sascha is damaged, yet apart from patching him up, he has no sympathy, and a somewhat clinical attitude. For someone that should know the system pretty well, he’s clueless at times. For him, Sascha is an inconvenience and Cashiel has no patience whatsoever, he lacks any warmth and has no understanding of human nature with absolutely no idea how to handle emotion. I have to say I did wonder at Sascha’s attraction to Cashiel and had a few cross words for him too, because he is one helluva cold fish! And as I said earlier, after meeting his mother, I could understand why. She is a powerful player in this world, with influence that reaches the upper echelons of this seemingly corrupt society with enough money to make things happen, all in her favour of course… and did I mention she’s a bitch!
Sascha as a slave is damaged and broken, a boy who appears weak, however, he has so much resilience, especially considering what he’s endured, he just made my heart swell to bursting point. Cashiel is a master, he appears strong but his actions only prove his weaknesses. He’s fallible and we see so many examples of this with his actions and inactions… he’s a man angry at the world whilst Sascha accepts his devastating lot with resignation… Both men indoctrinated by the Demotion System, albeit different entry points, but perhaps together they can find a way out of it?
Whilst this book is the first in a trilogy it doesn’t end on a cliff-hanger, however that doesn’t stop me from wanting book #2 NOW! Nothing in this book is predictable and Alicia Cameron had me twisting and turning all over the place, which kind of makes me nervous as to where she’s going next. I can’t even begin to tell you how impressed I was by this book and the authors effortless writing style. Through the characters voices she captures the emotional tone and mental state of these men perfectly and as we see them grow and evolve it’s made all the more believable with each intonation and nuance the author manages to evoke in her writing.
So Alicia Cameron… thank you… for hurting my heart, building up enough apprehension and tension, my nerves were frazzled enough to spew a string of expletives, that made me feel better, even if it didn’t change a damn thing on page… I love that shit!
Meet Alicia Cameron
Alicia Cameron has been making up stories since before she can remember. After discovering erotica during a high school banned books project, she never really turned back. She lives in Denver, Colorado with a tiny dog and rabbit who conspire regularly to distract her from doing anything productive. By day she works in the mental health field and is passionate about youth rights and welfare. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling, glitter, and punk rock concerts.
Forbidden Fiction will be gifting one lucky reader a choice of eBook from Alicia Cameron’s back catalogue listing with them.