The Silent Songbird by Melanie Dickerson
Published by HarperCollins Christian Publishing on November 8th 2016
Genres: Adaptations, Christian, Fairy Tales & Folklore, Historical, Religious, Romance, Young Adult Fiction
From New York Times bestselling author comes The Silent Songbird! Evangeline is gifted with a heavenly voice, but she is trapped in a sinister betrothal until she embarks on a daring escape and meets brave Westley le Wyse. Can he help her discover the freedom to sing again? Desperate to flee a political marriage to her cousin King Richard II’s closest advisor, Lord Shiveley—a man twice her age with shadowy motives—Evangeline runs away and joins a small band of servants journeying back to Glynval, their home village. Pretending to be mute, she gets to know Westley le Wyse, their handsome young leader, who is intrigued by the beautiful servant girl. But when the truth comes out, it may shatter any hope that love could grow between them. More than Evangeline’s future is at stake as she finds herself entangled in a web of intrigue that threatens England’s monarchy.Should she give herself up to protect the only person who cares about her? If she does, who will save the king from a plot to steal his throne?
Today’s book post is a Young Adult book that’s already hit #2 on the New York Times bestseller list – Silent Songbird by Melanie Dickerson. The Silent Songbird is a retelling of the Little Mermaid. At first, I couldn’t figure out how a retelling of The Little Mermaid would work with no magic and no mermaid, but it actually worked very well in Silent Songbird!
The story is about Evangeline, who is a young woman with a beautiful voice. She is also the ward of King Richard and is kept in a castle. Evangeline shows her determination and strength when it comes to the matter of being forced to marry the King’s terrible advisor. She meets a great guy named Wesley le Wyse, who is a sweet and caring man. I loved the way Wesley cared for Evangeline and the way he protected her. He made sure Evangeline was cared for even when he knew she was hiding something from him.
I have to say at first it seemed a bit predictable so I was worried that it would be just like a zillion other books I’ve read, but it quickly changed and became interesting. In fact the plot kept me turning the pages to see what would be happening next and how this whole story would work out. The characters felt real and there was a lot going on, which kept me me reading page after page. The romance in the story was beautiful too – I loved the clear Christian elements within the story too.
This is the seventh book in a series, but can easily be read as a standalone novel too. Other reviewers shared that this book is a sequel to The Merchant’s Daughter by the same author. I haven’t read that book yet, but there are references and characters from that book. Those references did not take anything away from my enjoying this book at all, and in fact, it made me a bit curious about The Merchant’s Daughter and the story of Wesley’s parents.
Melanie Dickerson is the New York Times bestselling author whose two favorite time periods are Medieval, which she has combined with her love of fairy tales, and Regency England, which stems from her love of Jane Austen. She is a 2-time Christy Award finalist, a 2-time Maggie Award winner, winner of The National Reader’s Choice Award for 2010’s Best First Book, and winner of the 2012 Carol Award in Young Adult fiction.
Melanie earned her bachelor’s degree in special education from The University of Alabama and has taught children with special needs in Georgia and Tennessee, and English to adults in Germany and Ukraine. Now she spends her time writing, hanging out on Facebook, and being with her husband, two daughters, and two guinea pigs near Huntsville, Alabama. Visit Melanie on the web at http://www.MelanieDickerson.com.
I received a paperback copy of this book without cost from the publisher through The Fiction Guild, a Thomas Nelson/Zondervan Elite Reader book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.