The Sin Eater's Daughter

The Sin Eater's Daughter

Book - 2015
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For four years, seventeen year old Twylla has lived in the castle of Lormere, the goddess-embodied, whose touch can poison and kill, and hence the Queen's executioner--but when Prince Merek, her betrothed, who is immune to her touch returns to the kingdom she finds herself caught up in palace intrigues, unsure if she can trust him or the bodyguard who claims to love her.
Publisher: New York : Scholastic Press, 2015
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780545810623
0545810620
Branch Call Number: YA F SAL

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akzfineart
Dec 02, 2016

I listened to an audiobook of The Sin Eater’s Daughter (read by Amy Shiels) and that was a huge mistake. There’s a lot of info dumping at the beginning of the novel, so it makes the audiobook seem really slow – like REALLY slow. The main character, Twylla would usually be talking about her past or the history of her kingdom and neighbouring kingdoms, which was interesting, but somehow the audio made it seem super boring.

Actually, the entire first half of the novel was boring and made me want to DNF it. I only continued it because at one point the king defies the queen in public and I knew something would go down. Usually the king and queen rule as equals, but the queen is the boss around here and is pretty much a villain. People have to tiptoe around her for fear of offending her and being put to death. The queen was actually the most intriguing character. I feel like I got a better sense of her personality versus Twylla’s. Finishing this book, I understand what Twylla is but not really who she is. I know being locked up in the castle half her life doesn’t really give Twylla the chance to get a hobby or make friends, but she still should have made a deeper impression on me than the queen.

There were things I liked and enjoyed about the book. The author infuses legends and myths familiar to the reader with her own fantasy world’s ones. For example, we hear stories like the Pied Piper and the biblical story of Adam and Eve falling from grace – although she changes a few things and doesn’t use the same names. The Sleeping Prince myth becomes central to the plot and I believe something like that already exists in our own world, which was great to read about! I also loved how sins existed in this world. There exist sin eaters, like Twylla’s mother, who eat the sins of dead people, which allows their soul to move on. This takes a huge toll on the sin eater. Twylla herself was meant to become a sin eater after her mother dies, but her destiny is changed and she becomes the goddess-embodied. I loved those two aspects! The world-building was my favourite part of the novel.

The romance was a little weird. Twylla and the prince haven’t seen each other for two years, so they act like I would expect: awkward strangers. Twylla and her new guard, Lief, however start to gain feelings for each other, but it only got weird when the guard says he’s in love with her after only knowing each other for 1-2 weeks. I liked the romance but it also had a lot of WTF moments.

Plot-wise it didn’t go exactly how I thought it would. There’s not much action and the protagonist pretty much stays in the castle for the entire book. I also expected the ending to go a different way, especially considering there’s a sequel. I did like the way it ended but the way I envisioned it was perhaps a bit more exciting haha. It just seemed too good to be true.

I also want to address the title. For the first half of the book I felt like it was a catchy title, but didn’t really relate to the novel or protagonist. Twylla’s younger sister is more the Sin Eater’s daughter than her, so it felt like those “The Tiger’s Wife/Daughter/something” titles that are nice but random. Twylla is the goddess-embodied and the future queen. She hasn’t seen her mother in years and won’t be the next sin eater. However, when I think about the last half of the book I’m a little unsure/neutral on the title. Sin becomes a more central theme during the last half.

Anyway, I did like this book and plan to read the sequel but there’s no way I’m listening to an audiobook again. In the last two minutes of the audiobook, creepy music starts up which was about the only good thing it did for me – it made me really excited for the sequel. Final verdict: if you don’t mind info dumping, you’ll probably like this. I wouldn’t recommend the audiobook.

n
nidofito
Dec 19, 2015

Although the story kept me interested enough to finish it one sitting and the romance was kinda hot (though the dude was a total dick) but GOD what an ignorant fool Twylla was.

Four years. I can't believe she spent four years living blind, deaf and mute like that.

a
ADWithrow
Aug 13, 2015

So....I made it to page 136. And then I gave up.

This was a really confusing read for me. The whole time I was waiting, rather impatiently, for something.....anything to actually happen. And nothing did.

There were a few amusing moments but as a whole the book feels starved. The characters are bland and flat. There is no real connection between anyone. I am supposed to feel like Twylla cares about Dorin, is developing feelings for Lief, etc. and yet none of it feels real.

The plot....well I still haven't been able to find one. There is no coherent story here. Just a girl, stuck in her room, with no real friends, and a terrible job. Take away the very thin mythology of the world and you have a typical outcast girl in high school. Just not an interesting read for me.

Twylla's voice especially is just boring. She is empty....with no real soul or purpose. At this point...I am roughly half way through and still don't care about anything that is going on. None of the characters interest me.

Moving on!

FindingJane Nov 28, 2014

This book stuns with its power as the tale of a young girl chosen for her coloring gets the dream of a lifetime—even if it does come with a terrible price.

The dilemma of Twylla and the stultifying nature of her closeted life gradually unfold within this book, as we are plunged into the mind of a tormented girl, mad queen and the hapless people they both serve in different ways. However, my dissatisfaction of Twylla’s behavior grew the longer I read this and finally I realized why.

Twylla is simply a typical damsel in distress, a pampered princess (in spite of the fact that she’s a commoner) who makes no move to leave the life she’s known until a handsome “prince” comes sweeping in to save her. The fact that he’s not the actual prince is immaterial. Both men offer her solutions to her dilemma and the reader can see why either offer is tempting. But it’s aggravating that Twylla herself asks no deep questions about her plight. When Twylla finally asserts herself, it’s a case of too little, too late.

The book does manage to surprise. The queen has a method to her madness that makes her a far more enjoyable antagonist than being a mere raving lunatic would do. This is important since she’s the main source of Twylla’s misery. However, this makes the book the usual case of a woman preferring the comfort of men over the strength of women; even Twylla’s own mother comes off as being cruel, conniving and controlling, a hideous overweight pig of a woman who glories in her power.

The language of this book moves; the engine of the story drives us forth with inexorable force. It’s too bad the heroine herself is nothing special.

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akzfineart
Dec 02, 2016

akzfineart thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

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