“Young Roxy Tam is rescued from a serial killer by Dagan Krayl, a half-mortal, half-god soul reaper who harvests darksouls—the souls of evil humans—at the behest of his father, a god of the Underworld. Although Roxy witnesses the violent death and harvesting of the killer’s darksoul by Krayl, the soul reaper spares Roxy, warning her to seek out a normal life and keep her distance from the Daughters of Aset, the natural enemy of soul-reapers.
Despite Krayl’s warning, it is Roxy’s destiny to become a member of the Daughters of Aset. Years later, when Roxy encounters Dagan Krayl again, she is a member of the Asetion Guard, and the soul-reaper’s enemy. Dagan’s brother Lokan has been murdered, and Dagan is determined to find those responsible while there is still time to return his brother to life and punish his killers. The Daughters of Aset are among the group of suspects in Lokan’s murder, and Roxy’s path collides with Dagan’s when she investigates another crime which may have ties to Lokan’s murder. Although Dagan’s goal is to extract information from Roxy about Lokan’s death, the soul reaper is shocked to discover he still has tender feelings for the young woman whose life he once saved.
In Sins of the Heart, the first book in the Otherkin trilogy, author Eve Silver skillfully integrates the humans who reside Topworld with a vast, complex group of deities and demons who inhabit the Underworld. Combining mythology and the Egyptian Book of the Dead with paranormal elements both borrowed and new, Silver creates a complex Underworld complete with hierarchies, ancient blood feuds, and supernatural characters with personal quirks. (Soul reaper Dagan carries a supply of lollipops to ease the sugar cravings induced by his half-human, half-god hyperactive metabolism).
A few structural pitfalls detract from an otherwise enthralling story. The beginning scene where Krayl saves Roxy ends too abruptly, and the remainder of their encounter is told rather than shown as backstory in later chapters. Unfortunately, the manner in which Roxy acquires her dark gift/curse from Dagan during their first meeting isn’t convincingly conveyed via flashbacks. The “whodunit” of Lokan’s murder is not fully disclosed by the end of the novel, nor is the question of Lokan’s re-animation answered in this first installment of the series. Still, the success of the first book in any series is measured by whether or not the reader has been engaged enough to want to pick up the next book. Sins of the Heart is a taste that leaves the reading wanting more.