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Kestrel's Midnight Song

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  197 ratings  ·  43 reviews
The land of Gable--renowned for its birds, revered for its legends and secrets--is home to the grandest castle in the known world. Inside this castle, in a narrow cell atop the dungeon tower, the legendary Marauder known as James Kestrel awaits his hanging. Amidst the anticipation and speculation surrounding his execution, rumors are spreading that the Marauders will come ...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published September 1st 2010 by Flaming Pen Press
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Average rating 4.01  · 
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Jun 24, 2010 rated it it was amazing
When it comes to youth fantasy, this is about as good as it gets. I kept having to remind myself how young Parker is and that this is his debut.

Micah is a young shepherd on a mission to deliver his sheep to King Darius. Robynn is a slave girl who just wants to stay out of trouble. Drift is a giant with far more brawn than brains. Three unlikely heroes who wind up in the middle of a plot by the Marauders to overthrow the king and take control of the castle. By the time his journey is through, Mic
Jul 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
In Kestrel’s Midnight Song J. R. Parker introduces us to a wonderful and imaginative world of fantasy. Action packed and full of rich characters this page turner kept me enthralled and feverishly reading through to the last word. Parker is wonderfully descriptive; I actually found myself gasping aloud at the twists and turns each character encountered on their way. I could hardly wait to see where his unique journey was going to take me next and now I am anxiously awaiting the sequel.
Jul 09, 2010 rated it it was ok
When I got the chance to pre-read and review J.R. Parker’s Kestrel’s Midnight Song, I jumped at the chance. It describes itself as being an adventure novel for younger readers, but seems to be more about the journey than the ultimate goal. The characters were a motley bunch, and could feel irrational mush of the time.
The hero is but a lowly shepherd, his only goal is to get to the palace to deliver his sheep to the king’s weaver. Micah sets off on his journey unaware of the flute, the Marauders,
Jul 04, 2010 rated it liked it
I received this book as an advance readers copy. I thought the cover artwork was well done and I loved the magnificent bird. The huge bird were thought-out and displayed quite nicely as the cover art, it didn't have any cheesy elements or design flaws (that I could tell). The story's beginning was intriguing and left you wanting to know what happened next. I also thought the minor characters were well-rounded and had distinct personalities.

I wanted the main characters to be more fleshed-out, I n
Jul 22, 2010 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: young readers who like fantasy and adventure :)
Shelves: novels, reviewed, ebook
One thing I'm going to say off the bat- it's REALLY good for a story written by a young author! It really is. I got an early copy through the author- it was quite enjoyable. There are many parts in the book in which the writing is beautifully done, and the storyline itself is one of originality and thought. But there were parts that seemed...flat...and sort of rushed.

The book itself is written from multiple views, in which I think is quite hard to do well. There are two main views in which the
Sep 24, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
I received this boook as a first-reads giveaway.
I am glad I entered this giveway. This book was very enjoyable to read. It contained everything I would expect a good fantasy novel to and more. The main character goes on a life-changing journey. Along the way he meets interesting characters and faces many dangers. This book was full of action and suspense and the plot keeps you guessing till the end. The book is filled with imaginative, descriptive language that brings the
world of this novel to
Sep 15, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Teen Fantasy Booklovers and Libraries
J. R. Parker's Christian Teen Fantasy, Kestrel's Midnight Song, is a riveting, page turner from start to finish. Micah faces many trials and challenges as he travels with his sheep to Gable Castle. Along the journey he is rescued by Robbyn and Drift, who are racing to save the Castle from the Marauder King and his band. Isaac Ganthorn is racked with guilt searching for a hope of redemption. Bart is a fool but he is more than he appears to be. Interwoven within all these characters' fates are the ...more
Kathleen Walls
Jun 23, 2010 rated it really liked it
I had the chance to pre-read Kestrel's Midnight Song and I was very happy that I had the opportunity to do so. This book was definitely an adventure from the very first page. The characters are well thought up and truly unique individuals. I grew to them throughout the novel. I found J.R. Parker's choice of words to be incredible. It allowed me to get the King Arthur time era feel. It is a wonderful mystery with a twist of fantasy. This story flowed and had me turning the pages in anticipation b ...more
Kat Heckenbach
Feb 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Part of me wanted to give this book four stars instead of five ONLY because I want to be able to give an even higher mark for J.R. Parker's future works. There WILL be future works for this new author. Parker was only nineteen when Kestrel's Midnight Song released, which means he's a young talent who has years to grow--not that he needs many. This book is a very strong start for him. Wonderful characterization, a solid plot, and vivid imagery. The story was told with surprising skill, especially ...more
Samantha Cutler
Aug 10, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone that is looking for a fun and enjoyable read
Recommended to Samantha by: Firstread
Kestrel's Midnight Song is a fantastic story. I found it impossible to put this book down once I began it until I was done that is. The characters are vividly real and draw the reader in until one cannot help, but have a deep connection with them and their trials. Readers of this fine book will realize that they have as much of a stake in the outcome as any of the main characters do. It is a creative and enjoyable read that will mesmerize people of all ages.
Jul 18, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This book starts you off with mystery and intrigue from the get go. I would share thid book with any who want a good fantasy book that they wont be able to put down till their done with it.
Robert Treskillard
Nov 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
An excellent debut novel!
Andrew Miller
Dec 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
James Kestrel, infamous Marauder captain, awaits his hanging locked away in the Gable Kingdom Castle. He alone knows the whereabouts of the Caelum Flute, a legendary musical instrument that allows the user to control birds. Micah, a lowly shepherd boy, is tasked with bringing sheep to the Gable Kingdom; but little does he know that he is a part of a larger Marauder plot. Robbyn, a slave girl, knows the Marauders plan to attack the castle, and she and her guardian, Drift, must find a way to warn ...more
Feb 12, 2019 rated it did not like it
Shelves: not-owned
DNF. I just couldn't get into the story. I was interested in Micah's part, but the rest of it I didn't care for. ...more
Jan 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everybody
Recommended to Adelehajicek by: Christian
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jake Scholl
May 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
Summary: A Sheppard boy is sent on a mission to take his sheep to the King to be sheared. Or so he’s told. Or is something more sinister at work?

When I first saw the cover for the book it looked like a normal stereotypical fantasy. On the inside an author compared J.R. Parker to Christopher Paolini. I could literally find hundreds of fantasies where there is a little blurb that says “Better than…. [Insert popular author here.]” And the book ends up being subpar. I had high expectations. And it
Deborah O'Carroll
Masterfully done!

In Kestrel's Midnight Song, teenage author Jacob Parker stunned me with his genius, weaving a tale of adventure, faith, suspense, intrigue and mystery.

Never before has a book surprised me like this one--it is full of the most amazing and unexpected plot twists that kept me guessing until the final pages. It was incredible. The stunningly spectacular climax literally took my breath away!

It includes memorable and lovable characters like the stalwart shepherd boy Micah, troubled t
Jun 24, 2010 rated it liked it
I thoroughly enjoyed reading Kestrel’s Midnight Song. I was initially hesitant to read it because the description mentioned the book having a Christian theme to it, and I wasn’t completely thrilled with the idea. Now having read the book, I don’t know why I worried at all; the small religious parts weren’t as overpowering as I had feared they might be, and they seemed like they had been added as an afterthought. Truthfully, it wasn’t like anything I’d expected; I thought it was going to focus mo ...more
Jul 08, 2010 rated it liked it
This book follows the journey of Micah, a shepherd, who would do anything to protect his sheep even risk his own life. He is part of a plan that he knows nothing about. A plan to help free Kestrel. On his journey he meets Bart, an unusual traveling companion who wears a mysterious symbol that is also branded on Micah's sheep. Micah also meets Robbyn and Drift. Robbyn is a girl trying to hide the fact that she is a slave. Drift is a giant and sworn protector of Robbyn. They are all traveling to t ...more
Jill Williamson
Nov 20, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Slave girl, Robbyn, is nearly burned to death in a fire set by the Marauder King. Drift, a giant, rescues her. Together they set off to warn King Darius that the Marauder King plans to attack the land of Gable. But will they get there in time? And even if they do, will anyone believe the claims of a slave girl and a giant?

Shepherd boy, Micah, embarks on a journey. He must deliver a herd of sheep to the Gable Kingdom Castle. King Darius has requested that the sheep's wool be sheared for his wardr
Aug 13, 2010 rated it liked it
First of all, I'd like to thank Mr. Parker for letting me to be one of the few to pre-read his book. Although I thought it wasn't the best, I truly think he has the potential to become a great author.

All I really have to say about this book is it was okay. It was neither really great, nor was it really horrible. It had a good plot, but I felt it could have been written better. At first while reading the synopsis I felt that this book would be packed with adventure and keep me glued to the page.
N.R. Tomasheski
Sep 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Fast-paced, with unique characters - the latter a pleasant surprise in today's glutted fantasy field! The story reveals itself through interwoven character arcs, which connection you may or may not intuit. They're not always what you might expect!
Each main character is well-developed and three-dimensional. Often, in a book with interwoven arcs, there's a character or two in whom I'm less interested. That didn't happen here; I cared about them all.
A note for animal lovers: there are scenes of ani
Sep 10, 2010 rated it it was amazing
= A fun read. Seems to get more and more exciting as the story rolls along.
= The mountain scenery comes alive during all the journeys through the mountains - not surprising cuz I guess the author has lived in Idaho all his life. I did a lot of backpacking along the John Muir Trail in California several years ago, and I can relate.
= There are several ocean scenes too - if the author wrote them from personal experience in or near Idaho, he must have spent some time on a large lake and sometimes
Oct 04, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-2010
This story kept jumping back and forth between characters, and I kept trying to figure out how they were all going to come together in the end. The plot was entertaining, and I really liked the main characters. The conclusion was good and explained most everything satisfactorily. My only complaint is that I would have liked to find out a little bit more of Robbyn's and Drift's stories. I was also sort of surprised when Christian viewpoints were brought up (although they never specifically say "C ...more
Jul 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
J.R. Parker's debut into the literary world couldn't have been better. Though still in his teens, his craftsmanship is on par with Rowling's and his world-building skills are up there with Tolkien's. As I zipped through this book, totally engrossed with the story, I lost sense of time and place. I lived and breathed with the characters, and every surprising plot turn threw me for a loop. The motley crew populating Kestrel's Midnight Song are a charming bunch; unique and captivating. After the la ...more
Margaret Metz
I enjoyed this book and I think it was especially well done considering the age of the author and the fact that it is shorter than most novels. Having said that, the larger number of viewpoints made it difficult to really get to know those characters in that short time frame. It made me wish he'd either made the story longer or had us focus on fewer people. It was an imaginative story with an unexpected twist at the end.

I think we can expect great things from this author if he keeps writing.
Pam R.
Jul 15, 2010 rated it liked it
I read the online pdf. version of this book. It is a well written story that will appeal to the young adult reader. The author, also a young adult, has a wonderful mastery of language.

The tale is a short one, not the tome of Rowling, or the development of characters. A much faster 'read' that will draw in those who think they don't like to read! It has nasty villians (boo hiss), heroic heros (applause), lots of fun scenic descriptions & a fine storyline.

Well done, Mr Parker!!
Sep 07, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2010, first-reads
This book was great! There was a strong sense of place, the characters were well developed, and the plot was intriguing. The whole time I was reading the book, I kept trying to figure out how all the pieces of the puzzle would fit together, and I have to say that I am pretty pleased with the way it all played out in the end. This book is definitely worth recommending, and I'll be passing it on to friends and family. ...more
Sep 09, 2010 rated it it was ok
I wanted to like this one a lot more. Maybe because I read a PDF version, it seemed to read a bit choppy ... I thought it moved around just a little too quickly, felt as if it were trying too hard to include too much, and I'd have liked to known the characters just a bit better. They seemed a bit superficial, and needed to be fleshed out a little. The story itself was a good one, but I have to put this on the "OK" shelf - rather than the "great" shelf". ...more
Sep 26, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Explore the land of Gable! Take a ride on the elusive Aegre bird! Join the search for the legendary Caelum flute! The adventure is thick with many fantastical scapes and creatures! The plot is developed with mastery. Everything falls into place neatly, without me suspecting it’s conclusion.

The inn-servant girl and the giant could have more involvement and purpose in the story. There isn’t enough thrilling material to make you read all night, but it isn’t boring either.

My rating: 4.5 stars
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J.R. Parker has been daydreaming for as long as he can remember, and recording those daydreams for nearly as long. He started writing Kestrel's Midnight Song around his fifteenth birthday, finished the first draft two years later, and submitted it to the publisher shortly thereafter. He has lived in Idaho his whole life. But his mind resides in various pockets of the clouds. ...more

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  Kerine Wint is a software engineering graduate with more love for books than for computers. As an avid reader, writer, and fan of all things...
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