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The Healer's Apprentice by Melanie Dickerson
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The Healer's Apprentice (edition 2010)

by Melanie Dickerson

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2322649,816 (3.6)5
Member:booksandwine
Title:The Healer's Apprentice
Authors:Melanie Dickerson
Info:Zondervan (2010), Paperback, 272 pages
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The Healer's Apprentice by Melanie Dickerson

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Showing 1-5 of 26 (next | show all)
I loved this book, which was kind of unexpected. It reminded me of Ella Enchanted, but a little more serious; I mean when you're dealing with assault, attempted rape, and demons, it's not really a light, humorous read. But somehow Dickerson pulled it off.

I figured out the twist about halfway through, and the ending was predictable of course, but it was still enjoyable. I loved that the Rose stays faithful in trusting and waiting on God. Such a great story.

I found the Q and A with Dickerson at the end interesting too. I think she did a much better job of retelling Sleeping Beauty, even though the story only had hints of the original, than Disney did. It stood alone well. ( )
  lyssa73 | Aug 2, 2014 |
Being a healer's apprentice affords Rose many benefits. She reads Latin, writes stories, knows how to use herbs to heal, and earns an income that allows her to avoid marriage to a bachelor of her mother's choosing. Rose's problem is that blood makes her squeamish. When she must treat Lord Hamlin, the future duke, it isn't just the blood that makes her unsettled. His handsome features and personal integrity draw Rose's interest, in spite of his high social status and well-known betrothal. Lord Hamlin is committed to fulfilling his duty. Rose is committed to becoming a capable healer. Despite their friendship and attraction, Rose and Lord Hamlin must each learn to walk their own path and follow the One whose plans are greater than their own. Read more in The Healer's Apprentice by Melanie Dickerson.

The Healer's Apprentice by Melanie Dickerson is based loosely on the Sleeping Beauty fairy tale. The story moved very fast in the beginning and right at the end, but for the majority of the time it was well-paced with intriguing characters and an engrossing story that felt original in spite of its fairy tale basis.

The Healer's Apprentice is marketed as Young Adult reading and had definite YA overtones that were mixed with Middle Age Catholicism. I was creeped out by the strange pagan rituals and demonic possession scene. Had I known those were in the book, I wouldn't have read it. Given its Sleepy Beauty basis, I suppose this shouldn't have been as surprising to me as it was. With an obvious Catholic/Christian perspective, the name of Jesus prevails over the demons. However, for me, that didn't negate the disturbing scenes. Had that part of the fairy tale been creatively changed somehow, I probably would have given this book a five star rating. The creepiness factor brings it down to three. The Healer's Apprentice is well-written and engaging, but I wouldn't read it again or recommend it to any of my friends. ( )
  Sneezybee23 | Jul 23, 2014 |
I'm writing this on my tablet so forgive my bad typing skills. :-)

Well what can I say? She's done it again. I've fallen in love with her writing, her attention to detail, her sickly sweet romance, her historical research and her character developing. Despite the fact it was clear where this would end up, I enjoyed the ride and was constantly rooting for Lord Hamlin and Rose to be together. The fact is, she is an author who likes a happy ending and because this book and the Merchant's daughter are based on fairy tales you know she won't disappoint in making everything fall happily and perfectly in to place. The only difference is she constantly reminds the reader that it is because of God that it all works out great. This will put some people off but not me. I enjoyed it and I liked that she wasn't afraid to express her faith in her writing, though sometimes I found the constant reminder of faith a little grating, it was sometimes unnecessary to put in and didn't work at certain moments.

I've also noticed with both the novels I've read of hers is that the villain is repulsive and ugly physically as well as mentally. To always view the villain as an ugly person is a bit cliched to me and her representation for the characters a little lacking in substance.

Overall though the writing is always a delight to read and her description never fails to impress me, creating a clear and beautiful picture of the world she has created.

It's one of those books you'll read again just because it makes you feel good.

So for me because of the minor criticisms above mentioned she gets four stars for this.

Nice one. ( )
  IceMaiden786 | May 31, 2014 |
This is a historical, Christian retelling of Sleeping Beauty. Rose has been apprencticed to the healer at Hagenheim Castle, and Rose knows how lucky a woodcutter's daugher like her is to have such a place. Rose tries hard to live up to the expectations on her, but dealing with blood makes her sick. The duke's sons have returned from the university, and the elder, Lord Hamlin has been betrothed his whole life, but his fiance has been hidden away to keep her safe. Rose is attracted to him, but knows she can never be with him. The younger son, Lord Rupert, is interested in Rose, but now she is caught between the two. ( )
  TheMadHatters | Apr 8, 2014 |
Rose, a woodcutter's daughter, is fortunate enough to have been apprenticed to the town healer, meaning that she won't be forced to marry just to secure her station in life. When she catches the eye of the duke's sons, her life starts to get extremely complicated. Wilhelm, the older son, is betrothed to a woman he has never met, and has spent years hunting the sorcerer who threatens her safety -- but he can't deny his feelings for Rose. Rupert, the younger son, romances Rose with flowers and jewelry and sweet words, but his love for wealth means that he will need to either marry a rich woman, or take a lucrative position in the church. Will Rose find happiness with either of the two?

I picked this up because I read a favorable review of one of the author's other inspirational fairy tale retellings, and I decided to start with this one because it was the first. The story, very loosely based on Sleeping Beauty, is pleasant enough, and the author ably incorporates her research on life in the middle ages into the book. There are occasionally places where the characters do or say something that seems a bit modern for their time, but those instances are the exception rather than the rule. My main issue with the book was that I found the plot entirely predictable, and not in a good fairy-tale-retelling way. There's a twist at the end, and I saw it coming from a few chapters in. Even the characters saw it coming, but dismissed it for one reason or another. It seemed entirely too obvious, so I kept reading, thinking that perhaps the author would twist it a different way at the last moment and surprise me . . . but she didn't. Also, the main character has a dog named Wolfie, and for some inexplicable reason, that minor detail irked me all the way through. Wolfie. I just can't. (I do give the author credit for not hurting the dog, though -- I always read books where the main character has a close animal companion with a looming sense of dread!) All in all, I think this is the sort of book that I would have enjoyed as a teen, back when I was less picky and read a lot more inspirational fiction. As it was, I found it just okay, and wouldn't recommend it unless the mashup of inspirational fiction and fairy tale really, really appeals to you. ( )
  foggidawn | Mar 5, 2014 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0310721431, Paperback)

Two Hearts. One Hope. Rose has been appointed as a healer's apprentice at Hagenheim Castle, a rare opportunity for a woodcutter's daughter like her. While she often feels uneasy at the sight of blood, Rose is determined to prove herself capable. Failure will mean returning home to marry the aging bachelor her mother has chosen for her---a bloated, disgusting merchant who makes Rose feel ill. When Lord Hamlin, the future duke, is injured, it is Rose who must tend to him. As she works to heal his wound, she begins to understand emotions she's never felt before and wonders if he feels the same. But falling in love is forbidden, as Lord Hamlin is betrothed to a mysterious young woman in hiding. As Rose's life spins toward confusion, she must take the first steps on a journey to discover her own destiny.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:54:16 -0400)

In this story loosely based on the Sleeping Beauty fairy tale, seventeen-year-old Rose, a healer's apprentice, falls in love with the betrothed Lord Hamlin, who is seeking the sorcerer who cursed his future bride.

(summary from another edition)

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