2019 Silver Falchion Winner

Book of the Year
Best Action-Adventure
Readers’ Choice


Fistful of Rain
By Baron R. Birtcher
Permanent Press
ISBN 978-1579625184
Publication Date: April 2018

Fistful of Rain

Review by R.G. Belsky


I loved Baron R. Birtcher’s last book South California Purples, and I’ve been eagerly waiting for this new one to come out. Wow, I sure wasn’t disappointed!

Fistful of Rain is a sequel that picks up with the story of cattle rancher/law enforcement officer Ty Dawson. It’s set in 1975, which allows Birtcher to eloquently write about a small town in the West dealing with the aftermath of the chaotic ’60s – while at the same time coming to grips with new political issues like Watergate and the end of the Vietnam war.

A seemingly small crime of livestock theft in the area quickly turns into arson and then multiple murders. The violence pits town residents against a mysterious “hippie” commune living on the land there – with Dawson in the middle.

Ty Dawson himself is a fascinating character. A tough lawman (I’d describe him as sort of a cross between Longmire and Matt Dillon) who loves his ranch and his family and always tries to do the right thing in the turbulent world around him.

The story is incredibly compelling too. Lots of twists and turns that stretch back over years, then a mind-blowing ending that puts everything into place.

This is a terrific new book by a terrific writer. Highly recommended!

R.G. Belsky is a journalist and crime fiction author. His newest book BELOW THE FOLD – second in a series,s was published on May 7. Belsky has worked as a top editor at the New York Post, the New York Daily News, Star magazine and NBC News. He has also published 12 mystery novels. Belsky won the Claymore Award at Killer Nashville in 2016. He has finished as a Finalist for both the Silver Falchion and David Awards. And his first Clare Carlson book, YESTERDAY’S NEWS, was named Outstanding Crime/News Based Novel by Just Reviews in 2018 and was also a Finalist for Best Mystery of 2018 in the Foreward/INDIE Awards.