Tuesday 7 February 2017

Book Review - The Sin Eater's Daughter

If you read my write-up about the Scholastic Blogger Feast 2017 post (if you haven't, you should click here and read), you are well aware that I kinda got myself into a bit of bother with Melinda Salisbury. At the time, I haven't read Sin Eater's Daughter or its sequel The Sleeping Prince yet. I had several bloggers telling me off and forcing copies of both books into my hands when I was making myself a copy of tea during one of the intervals. As we were talking about these books, I mentioned that I hadn't read these yet... AND MELINDA SAINSBURY WAS STANDING NEXT TO ME AND HEARD EVERYTHING!!! [insert mental screaming here] "I'll read them!" I promised her and everyone close by. "I'll start Sin Eater's Daughter before the end of this month [January] and I'll binge so am up to speed for Scarecrow Queen."

I started reading Sin Eater's Daughter the following day. And I finished it last Friday. So, am keeping to my promise to get myself up to speed before the third and final book in the series, The Scarecrow Queen, comes out in March.

In the first book in a high fantasy trilogy, we meet Twylla. A girl who is blessed. She is the Gods choice - the Daunen Embodied. She lives in the palace and is betrothed to married a prince and rule the kingdom by his side. But being so blessed has a price. To prove that she is the Daunen Embodied, she must drink poison every month and survive. And she does. But because of this, her skin is poison. One touch of her poison-infused skin and the person who has angered the Queen will die.

Only the new guard, Lief, sees Twylla beyond the role of Daunen Embodied. He sees the girl that she is. And in a court as dangerous as the queen's, that might not be for the best. In the queen's court, some truths should never be told...

I always stayed away from this book. The hype around this scared me and puts me off. What if I didn't like it?

I'm going to split this book into two part. The first 200 pages and the last 133 pages.

The first 200 pages I loved. I got sucked into this world-building and the gorgeously dark writing. There's something seductive about the writing, a quality that reminded me of Garth Nix's Old Kingdom series and Trudi Canavan's Age of the Five trilogy (I listened to the abridged audiobooks YEARS ago. Before I started the blog, actually, and one day, I will go and read the trilogy...). For the first two hundred pages, this sets everything up in a fashion that I don't see that often in fantasy books but when I do, I can't help but turn the pages at speed. This book's writing doesn't feel like a debut. It feels stronger. I liked the characters, the ideas put forward, the culture, the fairytales, the cruelty hinted out (oh, the Queen is a fascinating cruel character and I am quite intrigued to know more about her and why she behaved and think the way she did...), these were good within first 200 pages.

But, something happens around the 200 page mark which made the story take a turn. I enjoyed the story up to this point, but the love triangle (which is hinted at, FYI) goes up a gear. With me, I like love triangles where I root for both sides. But it felt very heavy handed, and because of this, I was awaiting the fallout. I love a good fallout and when it happened, I enjoyed it.

Some of you guys have said that this does have a feel of a standard fantasy series set-up book, and there were times I agree with you. But I feel that this book's writing and world building is the strongest element here. These and some of the twists Melinda pulled. And now things have been set up, I am very intrigued to see where The Sleeping Prince and The Scarecrow Queen goes... And I can't wait to find out!


  1. Very thoughtful and intriguing review. I'll stick it down as one of my #BritishBooksChallenge17 now :)

  2. Yay Andrew - you read it! I LOVED this book! So so much! Thanks for Linking up to the British Books Challenge x

  3. Finished it last night and I LOVED it!!! I disagree about the love triangle, I thought it was interesting because I wasn't particularly fond of either of them by the end. I'm glad she went off to live alone (even if she was still in contact with them)