This debut novel by Melinda Salisbury is masterfully written and brings a fresh twist to YA fantasy fiction. I had not read anything like this before and was completely compelled from beginning to end. Many of those who read stories do so in order to escape the realities of the real world. This is certainly one of those stories and Melinda Salisbury successfully transports the reader into the dark, yet compelling, world of her imagination.
The Sin Eater’s Daughter tells the story of Twylla, a girl who is led to believe she is a Goddess embodied and has the power to poison those in the Kingdom with one touch. Betrothed to the prince, she leaves her family behind to live in the royal castle alongside the Queen and her beloved son, Merek. The Queen is desperate to continue the royal bloodline and to strike down anyone who threatens her Kingdom, Lormere. In order to keep Twylla safe, the Queen hires a guard, Lief, from an opposing kingdom who’s arrival changes everything! Soon, Twylla begins to fall in love with Lief and tries her best to fight it. Plunged into a frenzy of emotions, Twylla has some important decisions to make. What is she willing to do to save her kingdom? Who will she choose?
Twylla is an extremely likeable protagonist; her dilemmas became my dilemmas and I was desperate for this doomed young woman to be happy. The extent of the Queen’s wickedness was revealed drip by drip throughout the story and led to one of the most shocking endings I have read in a while! The last few chapters of this magnificent story are filled with betrayal, heartbreak and treachery. The ending leads on brilliantly to a sequel and I cannot wait to read it.