Interview with Melanie Dickerson

     Today, I have the honor to host Melanie Dickerson, who is not only the author of The Healer’s Apprentice, but also of her latest novel, The Captive Maiden. She is a young adult author that spins classic fairy tales into a historical and Christian perspective. I have all of her books. I am still in the process of finishing her series, but the books that I have read, I love them. I even went to her book signing to get her to sign my copy of The Healer’s Apprentice. This interview gives readers a good insight to her writing and style of her novels. I would like to thank Mrs. Dickerson for her time and cooperation with the interview and generosity to give my readers a book giveaway.

1. Can we learn from fairytales, and why do they appeal to you?

Fairy tales have amazing themes, and I think we can learn from them. Most of 
them have some sort of moral or takeaway, a lesson we can learn. I like 
them, but it's hard to say what it is about them that appeals to me. I 
suppose I like the fact that good always (or usually) wins. A person who was 
born poor can end up marrying a prince, or an evil queen can end up getting 
her just desserts and be defeated by the orphan she mistreated.

2. The women in your books are strong heroines. Do these type of women fit
into the norm of conventional medieval society?

I think so. There are a lot of myths people believe about Medieval times. It 
actually was a time when women with a lot of gumption and determination 
sometimes did amazing things, in spite of the fact that men held most of the 
official power. Joan of Arc comes to mind. Women weren't quite as beaten 
down as most people think, especially if they had money or were 
property-owning widows.

3. In The Healer’s Apprentice and The Merchant's’ Daughter, why do you
decide to make your heroines be pursued by wealthy elderly men?

Actually, that was pretty common for that time period. Often, young women 
were pursued by older men and pressured to marry them. Money was power, so 
the lure of possibly becoming a wealthy young widow was probably very 
strong. Plus, it just increases the drama of the story, don't you think?

4. In all these four books, do you have a favorite character?

That's like asking a mother if she has a favorite child! It would be too 
hard to choose.

5. Do you put yourself into your characters?

Of course. :-) If I haven't experienced what they're experiencing, I can 
imagine it.

6. What do you hope readers can learn from your novels?

That God is good and He has a good plan for all of us. Each novel has at 
least one special lesson that I hope the reader can take away with them.

7. For those who would like to learn more about the medieval period, are
there any books that you can recommend?

Anything by Frances and Joseph Gies is highly recommended.

8. What genre of books do you like to read? Do you have any favorite
authors or books?

I suppose my favorite genre is historical romance. Some favorite authors are 
Mary Connealy, Ruth Axtell, Julie Klassen, and Julie Lessman.

9. Since your first novel in The Healer’s Apprentice has your writing
changed dramatically?

I don't really think so. I have certainly learned a lot and honed my writing 
skills (at least I hope so) since I wrote that one. But it also got edited a 
LOT. I don't think my writing style has changed too terribly much.

10. Are you working on any novels right now?

I just turned in my Frog Prince story, so I'm about to go back to working on 
a Regency series that I am enjoying very much. And of course, I have plans 
to write more fairy tale Medievals. :-) 

     Melanie Dickerson is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) and Romance Writers of America (RWA). Her novel of The Healer’s Apprentice has been a finalist of seven times in RWA-sponsored contests, including winning the 2007 Fiction from the Heartland Contest over all categories. She is also the author of The Merchant’s Daughter, The Fairest Beauty, and her latest novel, The Captive Maiden. Melanie earned a bachelor’s degree in special education of the hearing impaired from the University of Alabama and has worked as a teacher and a missionary. She lives with her husband and two daughters in Huntsville, Alabama.

You can find out more about Melanie Dickerson and her novels at her website.

                                                    Book Giveaway of The Captive Maiden


     I also have the opportunity to offer a copy of her The Captive Maiden to residents of the US. The entries are through the drawing from Rafflecopter. The giveaway will end on February 1st. I wish you all the best of luck!

Here is the summary of The Captive Maiden:

     Happily Ever After ...Or Happily Nevermore? Gisela's childhood was filled with laughter and visits from nobles such as the duke and his young son. But since her father's death, each day has been filled with nothing but servitude to her stepmother. So when Gisela learns the duke's son, Valten---the boy she has daydreamed about for years---is throwing a ball in hopes of finding a wife, she vows to find a way to attend, even if it's only for a taste of a life she'll never have. To her surprise, she catches Valten's eye. Though he is rough around the edges, Gisela finds Valten has completely captured her heart. But other forces are bent on keeping the two from falling further in love, putting Gisela in more danger than she ever imagined.

Check out my reviews of Melanie Dickerson's novels:

The Healer's Apprentice

The Merchant's Daughter

The Fairest Beauty

The Captive Maiden

The Princess Spy

The Golden Braid

A Spy's Devotion

The Huntress of Thornbeck Forest


  1. What a wonderful interview:) Great job! Sandra F.

  2. Yes, I agree with Anonymous, it was a very good interview. I'm not 'into' YA novels, but I enjoyed hearing what Melanie Dickerson had to say about her books, and I do agree that fairy stories are very important inasmuch as they give another perspective on what we would call reality.


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