Review: The Sin Eater's Daughter by Melinda Salisbury

Sunday, March 15, 2015
Title: The Sin Eater's Daughter
Author: Melinda Salisbury
Genre: fantasy
Series: The Sin Eater's Daughter #1
Pages: 320
Published: February 21, 2015
Source: Publisher via Edelweiss
Rating: 2 out of 5

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?

If you asked me, without looking, how many pages The Sin Eater’s Daughter is, I’d swear it’s 600+, each more interminable than the last. It’s not, but with endless internal monologues and prayer scenes and weeks locked in a tower, it feels twice as long. I’m something of a black sheep, but this book bored me to tears.

My biggest problem is Twylla. She is a dull character whom I never connected with. She has no thoughts or wishes of her own. At first, this is part of her storyline, twice raised with a religious destiny that doesn’t allow for her to have a childhood or future. However, once Lief comes into the picture and starts to shake up her world, all of her thoughts and feelings revolve around him. I never got a sense of her as her own person. I frequently forgot her actual age and thought she was fourteen, because she acts so immaturely. In fact, the only time I liked Twylla was a scene near the end of the book, where she admits that she’s been selfish and cowardly. It’s the only time I ever saw real emotion.

The love triangle is a joke. Neither character is particularly good for Twylla and I didn’t find them sexy or romantic or loveable. The entire book takes place over the course of a month, which makes all of these sweeping declarations even more ridiculous than usual. One of the men has a revelation at the end that’s supposed to be shocking, but left me cold, because there hasn’t been enough time to build to it.

The book has no plot other than “love triangle” until the last 60 pages. Unfortunately, while a far more interesting story, those last few chapters belong to a different book. In fact, it becomes a retelling of The Pied Piper. While there was some foreshadowing, it’s still a jarring change. However, in this part, I really liked the villain and thought her motivations were interesting. I found myself wishing the previous 250 pages were about her and not Twylla.

In the end, the book just doesn’t work for me. I found the pacing too slow at the beginning and the end, too frenetic. I didn’t think the epilogue worked at all, considering who the character had become. There were some interesting ideas, but I found everything to unravel in the same monotonous way. It might have been different if I’d cared for either of the romances, but as it is, I won’t be continuing the series.

1 comment:

  1. I gave this a low rating as well. I thought is poorly written and that the characters were very theatrical. The dialogue was atrocious. I could go on and on. Great review. I'm sorry this didn't work out for you either.


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