Melissa Muldoon is the author of three novels set in Italy:
All books are available in print and e-pub formats on Amazon.
For more information visit Melissa’s Author Website
Winner of Reader Views 2018 Literary Fiction Award
Dreaming Sophia is a magical look into Italy, language, art, and culture. It is a story about turning dreams into reality and learning to walk the fine line between fact and fantasy. When tragedy strikes, Sophia finds herself alone in the world, without direction and fearful of loving again. With only her vivid imagination to guide her, she begins a journey that will take her from the vineyards in Sonoma, California to a grad school in Philadelphia and, eventually, to Italy: Florence, Lucca, Rome, Verona, Venice, and Val d’Orcia. Through dream-like encounters, Sophia meets Italian personalities—princes, poets, duchesses, artists, and film stars—who give her advice to help put her life back together. Following a path that takes her from grief to joy, she discovers the source of her creativity and learns to love again, turning her dreams into reality.
Praise for “Dreaming Sophia”
Sheri Hoyte for Blog Critics: Author Melissa Muldoon presents spellbinding artistic expression in her delightful story, Dreaming Sophia. Not your typical Italian romantic adventure, Dreaming Sophia is a wonderful multifaceted story that pushes through several genres, with layers and layers of exquisite entertainment. The development of her characters is flawless and effortless, as is her ability to draw readers into her world.
Dianne Hales, author of “La Bella Lingua”: In Dreaming Sophia, Melissa Muldoon weaves many strands of Italian culture into a delightful blend of fantasy, romance, art, and history. With an artist’s keen eye and deft touch, she brings to life the titans of Italian culture in a touching tale of a young woman reeling from loss who discovers that “Italy is the answer.” The many Italophiles who share her belief will revel in the adventures of this kindred spirit.
Winner of Reader Views 2019 Literary Fiction Award
Waking Isabella is a story about uncovering hidden beauty that over time has been lost, erased or suppressed. It also weaves together several love stories as well as a few mysteries. Nora, an assistant researcher, is a catalyst for resolving the puzzle of a painting that has been missing for decades. Set in Arezzo, a small Tuscan town, the plot unfolds against the backdrop of the city’s Antique trade and the fanfare and pageantry of its medieval Jousting Festival. While filming a documentary about Isabella de’ Medici—the Renaissance Princess who was murdered by her husband—Nora begins to connect with the lives of two remarkable women from the past. Unraveling the stories of Isabella, a 15th-century Florentine noblewoman, and Margherita, a young girl, trying to survive the war in Nazi-occupied Italy, Nora begins to question the choices that have shaped her own life up to this point. As she does, hidden beauty is awakened deep inside of her, and she discovers the keys to her creativity and happiness. It is a story of love and deceit, forgeries and masterpieces—all held together by the allure and intrigue of a beautiful Tuscan ghost.
Praise for “Waking Isabella”
Cathy Johnson — What Cathy Read Next Book Blog: I really enjoyed Waking Isabella. I liked the idea it explored that events in the past have echoes in the modern day. As Nora muses, ‘People’s lives, energy, and actions had resounding effects flowing down through the years, touching, inspiring and sparking change.’ Waking Isabella is an engaging story of secrets, passion, loss, courage, betrayal and finding beauty in everything around you whether that’s art, friendship, food, wine, architecture, culture…or handsome jousters. It will appeal to those with an interest in Italy, art and who like the idea of awakening a little romance in their own lives.
Books & Tea: Waking Isabella by Melissa Muldoon is an absolutely beautiful book with rich and lush description. I was swept along Nora’s journey to discover more about Isabella. A little paranormal, a pinch of love and a spoonful of intrigue. A perfect blend to keep you reading until the last page
Eternally Artemisia They say some loves travel through time and are fated to meet over and over again. For Maddie, an art therapist, who wrestles with the “peculiar feeling” she has lived previous lives and is being called to Italy by voices that have left imprints on her soul, this idea is intriguing. Despite her best efforts, however, proof of this has always eluded her. That is, until one illuminating summer in Italy when Maddie’s previous existences start to bleed through into her current reality. When she is introduced to the Crociani family—a noble clan with ties to the seventeenth-century Medici court that boasts of ancestors with colorful pasts—she finally meets the loves of her life. One is a romantic love, and another is a special kind of passion that only women share, strong amongst those who have suffered greatly yet have triumphed despite it. As Maddie’s relationship develops with Artemisia Gentileschi—an artist who in a time when it was unheard of to denounce a man for the crime of rape, did just that—Maddie discovers a kindred spirit and a role model, and just what women are capable of when united together. In a journey that arcs back to biblical days and moves forward in time, Maddie encounters artists, dukes, designers, and movie stars as well as baser and ignoble men. With Artemisia never far from her side, she proves that when we dare to take control of our lives and find the “thing” we are most passionate about, we are limitless and can touch the stars.
Praise for “Waking Isabella”
Dianne Hales, author of “La Bella Lingua”: A true Renaissance woman, Melissa Muldoon weaves her passions for art and Italy into a stirring saga that sweeps across centuries. As her time-traveling heroine Maddie reconnects with kindred souls, we meet Artemisia Gentileschi, the 17th–century artist who overcame rape and ignominy to gain respect and acclaim. Historic figures such as Galileo and Mussolini also come to life in this intricately plotted novel, but the women who defy all constraints to take control of their destinies are the ones who prove to be eternally fascinating.