A swashbuckler set in the West Indies of the early 19th Century, THE WITCH FROM THE SEA is a love story, a coming-of-age adventure and an eccentric comedy of manners about a woman who runs with the pirates to free herself from the conventional "rules" of gender, race and class.

Tory Lightfoot, an orphan of mixed white and Mohawk blood, flees the stifling gentility of 1823 Boston for the freedom of the open sea. But the merchant ship on which she stows away is boarded by pirates off the coast of Cuba, and Tory is forced to join the pirate crew to save her life. Making herself useful as both log-keeper and spy, she begins to earn a measure of the independence she craves. But fate, fever and the relentless U. S. Navy West Indian Squadron close in, and Tory must risk her hard-won freedom to save the man she loves.
"I highly recommend this book to any lover of historical fiction."
— The Historical Novel Society Review
"The Witch From The Sea is that rare creation, an historical romance with guts as well as glamour. Wild-spirited Tory is an irresistible character."
— Nautical historian Joan Druett (She-Captains; Hen Frigates)
"I am in love with this book. A+."
Reading Rocks / YA Fiction Review

Tuesday, September 6, 2016


Sea turtles off the coast of Cuba!

These marvelous creatures remind Tory that all the women in her mother's Mohawk family are members of the Turtle Clan, descended from their mothers, and their mothers before them, all through time.

Having been an outsider for so much of her life, Tory is glad to be reminded that she is part of such an ancient lineage!

Tuesday, April 5, 2016


Ahoy there, pirate fans! Feast your ears on my first podcast!

Last month, it was my pleasure to be interviewed by the effervescent Phil Johnson—stand-up comic and pirate aficionado, proprietor of the salty website, "Under the Crossbones." And today, our podcast went live!

It's a swashbuckling half hour or so, where we natter on about my books, pirate movies, and the allure of all things piratical. And I devote a deal of air space talking about The Witch From the Sea, and how she came to be born, first in the stewing cauldron of my imagination, and then on the page.

 So hoist a pot of rum and check it out here!

PS: My interview starts at about the12-minute mark.)