First off, what a perfectly fitting title. The plot was fascinating and intriguing. A mystery that had everything rolled up into one amazing book: suspense, political intrigue, deception, head games, sex.
It's set in the dystopia future of New London where totalitarianism is in full force. Val Toreth is a para-investigator for the Investigation and Interrogation Division under "The Administration." He does his job without regret. He's manipulative, promiscuous, ruthless, has no conscience, and trusts no one. A borderline sociopath who can be scary as hell. He's someone that can torture a witness and within the next 10 minutes he's humming a happy little tune.
Keir Warrick is part owner of SimTech, a company whose developed a virtual reality "sim". A sim that everyone wants a piece of. Warrick is a man who is articulate, polite, and meticulous to the point of obsession. He also has a need to be in complete control, at least most of the time. This makes an utterly SEXY combination.
On the surface, this is who Toreth and Warrick are but what's underneath is a whole different story. So who has the control? I love the tug of war they play with each other. They had me completely guessing and in all honestly I still haven't made up my mind what to think of them.
A murder at SimTech brings these two men together. This is where the games begin. There is always a power struggle, whether it's between Toreth and Warrick or Corporate vs. Administration or the many other antagonist introduced in the book. Of course the games between Warrick and Toreth are hands down my favorite. They knew exactly how to play each other and it was amazing to watch. These two are such a perfect match in every way, intellectually and sexually. They go at it blow for blow. I'm so curious to see what happens with them.
My only complaint is that midway through I thought some of the suspect interviews dragged on a bit. This didn't deter me from the book but I wanted to see a bit more of Warrick.
Be warned, this is not a romance. Yes, Toreth and Warrick are hot but the book does not soley revolve around their relationship. This is first and foremost a story of intrigue and power struggle.
Had to add this because it sums up so much and I love the quote: Toreth stared into the glass, watching the bubbles rise and die while he thought about that. He owed Warrick his career and his life...and Warrick owed him SimTech, and possibly his freedom. Not too much of an imbalance there, but a hell of an entanglement, something he always avoided at all costs. A mutual debt like this could never be wiped out.