Misty Massey


People are saying the nicest things!

“This rollicking debut combines swashbuckling sea adventure, fantasy, and romance with great success. Kestrel was born a Promise, a child with magical talents, and as such sought by the Danisoban mages who control all use of magic. After the Danisoban Brethren kill her parents, Kestrel survives as a street urchin and tavern maid before running away to sea. The sea cancels Danisoban magic, but Kestrel soon learns she retains her untrained ability to command the weather. She signs on with Capt. Artemus Binns, only to see him arrested for piracy and hauled away. Kestrel promptly sets sail in pursuit and finds herself in the middle of a civil war between the Ageless King of the Danisobans and his treacherous and ambitious son, Prince Jeremie. Massey’s world building can be a little sparse, but there’s enough spirit of adventure to carry Kestrel (and the reader) past the occasional plot hole, with plenty left over for sequels.”

–Publishers Weekly, 1/14/08

“Swashbuckling magical adventure with a heroine who could hold her own with Captain Blood, the Sea Hawk, or Captain Jack Sparrow.”

–Fantasy Magazine

“What I like about Kestrel is how comfortable she is in her skin. Her qualms about her magical ability aside, she straddles the gap between women and pirates with panache. She is endearingly unselfconscious in her admittedly unusual role. And though she despises skirts and does not actively seek men out, she doesn’t avoid them either. Misty Massey doesn’t spend much time laying out back story on her characters. The reader is plunged into the middle of the action and comes to know the characters slowly as the story progresses. It wasn’t until the end that I felt like I was getting a handle on who Kestrel, McAvery, and Binns really were. But it was a fun ride, packed with characters full of secrets and escapades on the high seas. I look forward to checking out Kestrel’s (and McAvery’s….grin) further adventures as Massey is currently working on the second volume.”

— Angieville

“A different type of fantasy that will keep you reading late into the night. This story is a combination of pirate and fantasy rolled into one. Though this is a stand alone tale, it clearly sets a strong foundation for future adventures of the Promise named Kestrel. Though Kes has no idea why, she knows that she is unique among the other Promises. Since she has escaped the Danisoba, thus far, Kestrel has no real knowledge as to what magic she can do. I found it fascinating to follow her and see the surprises, betrayals, and fights (on sea and on land) as they happened to her. I only hope the next story gives a clearer insight into which types of magic Kes can manipulate.”

— Detra Fitch, www.huntressreviews.com

“Mad Kestrel is the most fresh and exciting first novel I have seen in a while. Well written, and thoughtful, Mad Kestrel combines fun and adventure with grand themes and deep desires. A delight for anyone who loves fantasy and the sea.”

–R. Garcia y Robertson, author of Firebird

“Fast-paced, stylish, and romantic, this is a pirate novel with a difference: intriguing magic. Kestrel is a heroine to root for, who really comes alive; long may she sail!”

— Ed Greenwood

“Anyone who has ever dreamed of the colorful adventure and swash-buckling intrigue of a pirate’s life at sea will find lots to like here. Laced with magic and misdirection, Misty Massey’s fast paced and intriguing tale kept me guessing and guessing again as layers of mystery unfolded right to the end.”


“Imagine ‘Captain Blood’starring a young woman with a hidden talent for sorcery, and you’ve got a hint of what you’ll find in Mad Kestrel, a lively tale of reckless pirates, ruthless bounty hunters, reluctant mages, and romantic adversaries. Fun, fast-paced, and full of action, Misty Massey’s first novel takes a few fine old adventure story traditions and mixes them with magic.”