Ronald E. Yates : The Improbable Journeys of Billy Battles

The Improbable Journeys of Billy Battles

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Travel & Adventure, Fiction & Literature

For Readers Of

Ken Follett, , , Ruta Sepetys, James A. Michener, , Barbara Kingsolver, Anthony Doerr

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Print Length

402 pages





Publication Date

June 2016



About the Book    About the Author

Billy Battles is definitely not in Kansas anymore.

As Book 2 of the Finding Billy Battles trilogy opens, Billy is far from his Kansas roots—and his improbable journeys are just beginning. He is aboard an ocean liner sailing to the Mysterious East (Japan, Hong Kong, French Indochina, and the Philippines), among other places.

The year is 1894 and aboard the S S China Billy meets a mysterious, dazzling, and possibly dangerous German Baroness, locked horns with malevolent agents of the German government, and battled ferocious Chinese and Malay pirates in the South China Sea. Later, he is inadvertently embroiled in the bloody anti-French insurgency in Indochina–which quite possibly makes him the first American combatant in a country that eventually will become Vietnam.

Later, in the Philippines, he is thrust into the Spanish-American War and the anti-American insurgency that follows. But Billy’s troubles are just beginning. As the 19th century ends and the 20th century begins, he finds himself in Mexico and Europe entangled with political opportunists, spies, revolutionaries and an assortment of malicious characters of both sexes. How will Billy handle these people and the challenges they present?

Editorial Reviews

The Improbable Journeys of Billy Battles is just as powerful a read as its predecessor, Finding Billy Battles, taking readers on a realistic and compelling journey from Kansas to the wider world and bringing with it the subtle nuances, emotions, and feel of the late 1800s. Unlike the first book, however, this one takes place far from the Kansas world Billy operated in, and follows his far-reaching journeys which begin in 1894, with Billy sailing to the Far East in the firm clutches of dangerous associates. Revolution and turmoil are in the air; and with Billy at the eye of the storm, a rollicking good read is the result: one highly recommended for fans of not just Westerns, but compelling historical action stories. D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review.

The second volume in the Finding Billy Battles trilogy, The Improbable Journeys of Billy Battles picks up right where its predecessor left off. This time, author Ronald Yates' intrepid protagonist finds himself on a steamship en route to the Far East, trying to assuage the pain of losing his beloved wife. It isn't long before Billy is immersed in a tumultuous world of action, adventure, and danger, all set against the backdrop of ever-unfolding cultural and political events. Featuring superb plot and character development, the most salient aspect of Yates' tale is his inimitable storytelling style. Though he's chosen late 19th century Asia as the subject of his latest offering, one gets the sense Yates could write about any number of different topics with the same compelling skill, and the result would be the same: a rich, eye-opening yarn that proves impossible to put down. In an era where the average attention span is as long as the next Snapchat video, this ability is a rare trait, and indicative of true literary talent. Rife with eye-opening action and engrossing details, The Improbable Journeys of Billy Battles treats the reader to the highly intriguing travels of a seasoned journeyman. Highly recommended. Daniel Goodson, Apex Reviews

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