FICTION
Death of a Rainmaker
Kaylie Jones: Akashic. (Dust Bowl, Bk. 1). Oct. 2018. 320p. ISBN 9781617756795. $32.95; ebk. ISBN 9781617756801. M
COPY ISBN
OrangeReviewStarIn the 1930s, Jackson County, OK, went more than 240 days without rain, so a group of local businessmen hires an itinerant rainmaker, Roland Coombs, who claims his efforts with TNT and blasting power will make it rain in five days. But in the midst of a violent dust storm the next day, Coombs is killed. Sheriff Temple Jennings already has a lot on his plate: attending farm foreclosures, dealing with his reelection campaign, and investigating minor crimes such as a peeping Tom. When Temple's murder investigation leads to Carmine DiNapoli from the Civilian Conservation Corps, he finds himself at odds with his wife, Etha. Carmine reminds Etha Jennings of their dead son, and she'll do everything in her power, even some sleuthing herself, to prove the young man didn't kill Coombs. This richly detailed historical mystery brings the Dust Bowl to life, with the hardscrabble farms and semirural community barely coping with the losses of farms and local businesses.
VERDICT This evocative first volume in a new series should appeal to readers of Larry D. Sweazy's "Marjorie Trumaine" mysteries or Donis Casey's Oklahoma-set "Alafair Tucker" books. Fans of narrative nonfiction, including Timothy Egan's The Worst Hard Time, the book that inspired this work, may also want to give it a try.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.

RELATED 

TOP STORIES

LIBRARY EDUCATION

Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones

COMMUNITY FORM

Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones

COLLECTION DEVELOPMENT

Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones

Get connected. Join our global community of more than 200,000 librarians and educators.