The Sin Eater’s Daughter by Melinda Salisbury

The Sin Eater’s Daughter

“I am the perfect weapon, I can kill with a single touch.”

Seventeen-year-old Twylla lives in the castle. But although she’s engaged to the prince, Twylla isn’t exactly a member of the court.

She’s the executioner.

As the Goddess embodied, Twylla instantly kills anyone she touches. Each month she’s taken to the prison and forced to lay her hands on those accused of treason. No one will ever love a girl with murder in her veins. Even the prince, whose royal blood supposedly makes him immune to Twylla’s fatal touch, avoids her company.

But then a new guard arrives, a boy whose easy smile belies his deadly swordsmanship. And unlike the others, he’s able to look past Twylla’s executioner robes and see the girl, not the Goddess. Yet Twylla’s been promised to the prince, and knows what happens to people who cross the queen.

However, a treasonous secret is the least of Twylla’s problems. The queen has a plan to destroy her enemies, a plan that requires a stomach-churning, unthinkable sacrifice. Will Twylla do what it takes to protect her kingdom? Or will she abandon her duty in favor of a doomed love?

Personal Thoughts:

Melinda Salisbury story telling dazzles right at the first page. Her narrator, Twylla has an intriguing voice that is both sympathetic and interesting. As Twylla narrates her life inside the palace and as Daunen Embodied readers will surely feel her struggles. Her role as Goddess embodied certainly feels like a curse than a gift. She isn’t perfect, not even like-able. In fact she frustates me a lot of times. Sometimes I wonder how come she just do things without questioning them, but then I will remember that she has a poor background. People like her are brought up not to question things especially not the Queen. Her character development though a little slow is quite interesting.

“Choice. For years I’ve craved it, idealized it as a dream I can never have and, though it pains me to admit it, the queen is right. I have had choices, but because I didn’t like them I didn’t acknowledge them. I’ve been the agent of my own misery, time and again.”

As for the mens, well we have a soldier and a Prince as contenders for Twylla’s affection and loyalty. Sounds familiar? Yes, I’ve read that set-up countless times before, there’s Chaol and Dorian from Throne of Glass, Damian and Rylan from Defy, Aspen and Maxon from The Selection series, now we have Lief and Merek to add to the list. These two are easily like-able characters who both have their owns motivations/reasons in winning Twylla’s affection. Compare to Twylla, Lief and Merek are more developed characters.

The title kinda spoil some of the twist for me. While reading I keep on asking myself, why is the title The Sin Eater’s Daugther if the main character Twylla is more than just the sin eater’s daughter? Her role as the Goddess embodied or specifically Daunen Embodied is far much greater than being a daugther of a sin eater. As I notice that fact, my questions go deeper and eventually lead to my conclusion that maybe Twylla isn’t really a Goddess embodied. So obviously, with that thought I formulated lots of theories so the revelation in the end though satisfying isn’t really shocking to me.

What surprise me is how smart the villain is to orchestrate such a huge lie. The extent of her manipulation is so grand that I can’t believe she actually think all of it by herself and that she was able to pull it all off. She is not only cunning and manipulative but also villainy smart. A worthy villain to a high fantasy novel like this one.

“You think if having choices like people think of flying. They see a hawk soaring and hovering and they tell themselves how nice it would be to fly. But pigeons can fly, and sporrows, too. No one imagines being a sparrow, though. No one wants that.”

Full of intrigue, secrets, betrayals, Melinda Salisbury weaved a beautiful and intriguing fantasy novel in The Sin Eater’s Daughter. This is a wonderful start to a very promising YA fantasy series.