Rain Gods: James Lee Burke

It’s been a long time between drinks for Sheriff Hackberry Holland, who last appeared in 1971’s Lay Down My Sword and Shield. Now close to retirement and working in a small town on the Mexican border, the discovery of nine dead Thai women in a local churchyard brings the attention of Immigration and the FBI to his isolated community, and also to two young drifters inadvertently caught up in the drama who must be protected from both the law and several nefarious evil-doers who want them eliminated.

Burke’s greatest talent as a writer is an extraordinary ability to evoke people and places – one can almost smell the dusty air of his beautiful yet broken America, a desolate landscape littered with the remnants of unfulfilled dreams and populated by the marginalised and forgotten. Another strong offering from an author who rarely lets his quality dip.