Finding Billy Battles is a powerful introduction to what promises to be a gripping saga, and is especially recommended for fans of historical fiction who seek accuracy and depth as much as entertainment. (There is) more than casual attention to historical accuracy in the course of this story. Ronald Yates has created the first in a trilogy that is marked by swift action, strong characters, and settings and a history firmly based on real events. D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review).
The novel's narrator is the great-grandson of Billy Battles, whom he meets for the first time when the old man is nearing the end of his days. The story unfolds from there, in this case, underpinned by letters and diaries as well as the old man's recollections, fact about taking the reader on a rollicking romp through the Wild West. There are artefacts about the historical characters who appear throughout this first volumeof what is designed as a trilogy. The book conveys a real-life ambience through the author's diligence in whipping up authentic Kansas dialogue. Palmetto Reviews
From the Author
The Finding Billy Battles trilogy tells the amazing story of a man who is born in 1860 and who dies in 1960. In between Billy lives an improbable and staggering life of adventure, peril, transgression, and redemption. Then Billy mysteriously disappears. For several decades his family has no idea where he is or what he is doing. Finally, with his life coming to an end, Billy resurfaces in an old soldiers' home in Leavenworth, Kansas. It is there when he is 98 that he meets his 12-year-old great-grandson and bequeaths his journals and his other property to him -- though he is not to receive them until he is much older. Years later, the great-grandson finally reads the journals and fashions a three volume trilogy that tells of his great-grandfather's audacious life in the old west. But it doesn't stop there. The trilogy follows Billy on his improbable journeys to the Far East of the 1890s, including French Indochina and The Philippines. Finally, in the 20th century, we learn of Billy's travels to Europe, Mexico and Latin America where his adventures and predicaments continue. One thing readers can be sure of, wherever Billy Battles goes trouble is not far behind.