This book starts out with Aisling's (the main character) mother dying. Aisling is about 12 years old at this time. Two weeks after she died, Aisling's father left on a merchant trip to their royal city and when he came back, he brought a new bride, Lady Isobel, and her 2 daughters, Ana and Clara with him. That night, Aisling left the house, since she couldn't stand the thought of her new stepmother in her mother's room. She went for a walk in the forest just behind their house. After she had been walking for awhile, she came upon a man with unearthly beauty. She realized right away that he was too beautiful to be human. He was a fairy. He told her to leave and she did. When she got back to her house, she found out that her father had become very sick. after a week with no improvement, Lady Isobel decided to take him to her house in the city to have a doctor look at him. Two weeks later, he died. Lady Isobel called Aisling into her room the next day and told her that her father had serious debts before he married her and that Aisling would have to work them off in Lady Isobel's house. This story is like Cinderella, but with fairies tied in.
I think Aisling is going to meet the fairy man again and he is going to help her with her stepmother and stepsisters.