Ever since her brother Lief disappeared, Errin’s life has gone from bad to worse. Not only must she care for her sick mother, she has to scrape together rent money by selling illegal herbal cures. But none of that compares to the threat of the vengeful Sleeping Prince whom the Queen just awoke from his enchanted sleep.
When her village is evacuated as part of the war against the Sleeping Prince, Errin is left desperate and homeless. The only person she can turn to is the mysterious Silas, a young man who buys deadly poisons from Errin, but won’t reveal why he needs them. Silas promises to help her, but when he vanishes, Errin must journey across a kingdom on the brink of war to seek another way to save her mother and herself. But what she finds shatters everything she believed about her world, and with the Sleeping Prince drawing nearer, Errin must make a heartbreaking choice that could affect the whole kingdom.
A small confession first: I read The Sin-Eater’s Daughter last year, and, while I enjoyed it, I didn’t love it. However, I liked it (and Melinda Salisbury herself, who is lovely) enough to pick the sequel up, and I’m so glad I did, because The Sleeping Prince is phenomenal. Seriously, a thousand times better than its predecessor.
The main reason for this is that it’s a war story, and Salisbury doesn’t hold back on what the consequences are of that war. It’s not pretty. She shows us, in heartbreaking detail, exactly what the refugees are suffering, and how hard it is for them to survive even once they’re out of the immediate danger posed by the Prince. In the current climate, I think that’s an incredibly important message to be sending. In case you haven’t realised, this is the part of the book that has stayed with me most. I was blown away by how powerful those scenes were. However, the writing throughout the whole book is great and Errin might just be my favourite heroine of the year. She’s strong and loyal and confident, but she’s flawed too, and doesn’t always make the right decisions. The story moves along quickly and it’s yet another book this year I couldn’t put down. It’s also a book which left me wanting the sequel fairly desperately, so I have no hesitation in recommending it to everyone!