Monthly Archives: August 2018

Discover #HistoricalFiction #adventure packed with #action by #RRBC author Ron Yates @jhawker69

Billy Battles

The summer is waning and I have not written a word in weeks. Real life takes precedence sometimes. On the positive side, I have found time to read and there are talented writers out there producing quality books. Like this historical series by RRBC author Ron Yates. Here’s my review for the first book in the Finding Billy Battles Trilogy:

5***** I really enjoyed this story. Just the idea that someone is left with a trunk full of memorabilia, journals and a manuscript describing a great grandfather’s life is so intriguing. And so begins the recount of the life of Billy Battles. This is historical fiction the way I like to read it. Set in the late 19th century, it’s a train ride across America. I know very little about this time period and it was a real pleasure to learn something about it in such an entertaining way. I’m looking forward to continuing with the series.

About the book: When a great-grandson inherits two aging trunks and a stack of meticulously detailed journals penned by his great-grandfather, he sets out to fulfill his great-grandfather’s last request: to tell the story of an incredible life replete with adventure, violence, and tragedy. The great-grandfather’s name is Billy Battles–a man often trapped and overwhelmed by circumstances beyond his control.

For much of his 100-year-long life Billy is a man missing and largely unknown to his descendants. His great-grandson is about to change that. As he works his way through the aging journals and the other possessions he finds in the battered trunks he uncovers the truth about his mysterious great-grandfather–a man whose deeds and misdeeds propelled him on an extraordinary and perilous journey from the untamed American West to the inscrutable Far East, Latin America and Europe.

As he flips through the pages of the handwritten journals he learns of Billy’s surprising connections to the Spanish-American War, French Indochina, and revolutions in Mexico and other Latin American countries. But most of all he learns that in finding Billy Battles he has also found a long lost and astonishing link to the past.

About the author: Ronald E. Yates is an award-winning author of historical fiction and action/adventure novels, including the popular and award-winning Finding Billy Battles trilogy. His extraordinarily accurate books have captivated fans from around the world who applaud his ability to blend fact and fiction.

RonRon is a former award-winning foreign correspondent for the Chicago Tribune and Professor Emeritus of Journalism at the University of Illinois where he was also the Dean of the College of Media.

His book, “The Improbable Journeys of Billy Battles,” is the second in his Finding Billy Battles trilogy of novels and was published in June 2016. It has won multiple awards, including the 2017 KCT International Literary Award, the 2016 New Apple Literary Award in the Action/Adventure category and First Place in the 2016 Chanticleer International Book Awards in the Literary Category. It was also a finalist for the Diamond Book Award in the United Kingdom. The first book in the trilogy, “Finding Billy Battles,” was published in 2014 and was a finalist for a Laramie Award.

Book 3 of the trilogy, “The Lost Years of Billy Battles,” was published in June 2018.

Ron has been a presenting author at the Kansas Book Festival and the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, among other venues. He is also the author of The Kikkoman Chronicles: A Global Company with A Japanese Soul, published by McGraw-Hill. Other books include Aboard the Tokyo Express: A Foreign Correspondent’s Journey through Japan, a collection of columns translated into Japanese, as well as three journalism textbooks: The Journalist’s Handbook, International Reporting and Foreign Correspondents, and Business and Financial Reporting in a Global Economy.

Before leaving the world of professional journalism where he toiled 25 years, Ron lived and worked in Japan, Southeast Asia, and both Central and South America where he covered several history-making events including the fall of South Vietnam and Cambodia; the Tiananmen Square massacre in Beijing; and wars and revolutions in Afghanistan, the Philippines, Nicaragua, El Salvador and Guatemala, among other places.

Ron’s work as a war correspondent resulted in several awards, including the Inter-American Press Association’s Tom Wallace Award for coverage of Central and South America; the Peter Lisagor Award from the Society of Professional Journalists; three Edward Scott Beck Awards for International Reporting, and three Pulitzer nominations.

He is a proud graduate of the William Allen White School of Journalism at the University of Kansas.

He writes a blog entitled “ForeignCorrespondent” that can be found at: http://ronaldyatesbooks.com/category/foreign-correspondent
His Website and authors pages can be found at: http://ronaldyatesbooks.com

 

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Looking for a great summer read? My pick is Flowers and Stone by #RRBC #RWISA author Jan Sikes @rijanjks

JanBook

My review:

I really enjoyed this book. It’s a simple love story about Darlina and Luke and their whirlwind romance. (Click here to purchase the paperback and the kindle version.) I loved the biographical aspect and the honest, innocent way we were allowed to peek into the lives of these two people. It’s set in the world of country music in the early seventies and I really liked that, too. I found I wanted to tell people about this book as I was reading it and took my kindle everywhere with me so I could finish it. It’s a perfect book for commuters. (I read a lot on the train and not every book is good for the train.) Highly recommended series. I can’t wait to start the second book in the series. Five Stars!

Here’s the blurb:

The epic love story begins here! A hot Texas summer, dim-lit honky-tonk bars, a young naïve fledgling go-go dancer and a wild rebel Texas musician set the stage for this story.
1970 in Abilene, Texas finds young Darlina Flowers trying to figure out how to fit into the world she is most attracted to – the nightlife, live music and go-go dancing. Luke Stone, a veteran Texas Musician believes he’s lost all reason to care about his music career, his health and most especially his heart. A chance meeting with Darlina changes everything. But, is it too late? Has fate already determined the outcome? Join Luke and Darlina on a passion-filled journey up and down Texas roads while Luke and his band entertain crowds along the way.

Can Darlina Flowers ever hope to fit in to this strange new world and even more important, can she trust Luke Stone with her heart? Luke Stone, a good man who has made a career of bad decisions, falls as completely in love with Darlina as she does with him. But is it too late?

Will their eternal unyielding love survive the test of time, distance and iron bars?

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About Jan Sikes:

Jan Sikes, RRBC RWISA author, started writing when she was a young girl, around the age of eight. Her first writing was a gospel song. She had an uncle whom she loved dearly, but he was an alcoholic and his drinking caused such family discord that at times, resulted in him being banished from their home. So, she wrote a song about Uncle Luke finding Jesus. That is her first memory of feeling the passion deep down to her toes for writing.

The stories she writes (so far) are true stories about the journey of two people moving through adversity in order to grow and learn to become better humans. She believes with all her heart there is something that is worthy of sharing in these stories. Bits and pieces of wisdom, hard-learned lessons and above and beyond all, love…True love that you read about in fiction stories and yet this is truth. The old saying that truth is stranger than fiction fits the stories that she shares through her writing.

She is passionate about her writing projects and is driven to tell a story with the hope that it might touch someone’s heart or life in a positive way.

She also releases a music cd of original songs along with each book that fits the time period of the story. Why? Because the stories revolve and evolve around a passion for music.

She is widowed, lives in North Texas, attends music festivals and has four incredible grandchildren.