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Reap the Wind

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Joel Burcat
Action-Adventure / Suspense / Climate Change / EcoThriller
Publisher: Milford House Press, an imprint of Sunbury Books, Inc.
Date of Publication: February 6, 2024
Number of Pages: 215 pages
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Image of Reap the Wind cover.


Reap the Wind is a thrilling action/adventure novel that follows three lawyers as they embark on a treacherous journey from Houston to Cincinnati during a catastrophic hurricane. Josh Goldberg is on a mission to be with his girlfriend for the birth of their child. Along the way, they’ll face terrifying obstacles like tornadoes, hailstorms, and driving rain. But the real danger may come from within as they struggle to survive each other’s company. His two travel companions—his best friend, a drug-addicted lawyer, and his conniving boss who has her own agenda.

Don’t miss out on this unforgettable odyssey that might just be a suicide trip.

Reap the Wind by Joel Burcat: The Perfect Storm meets The Firm.


Reap the Wind is a bold, bracing and blisteringly original take on the legal thriller form. Joel Burcat has fashioned a seminal tale focusing on the nightmare of all road trips in which a storm raging outside the car is matched only by the storm raging within. Burcat dares to tread on the hallowed ground of John Grisham and Scott Turow and ends up blazing a fresh, daring literary tale of his own. Not to be missed!”
Jon Land, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author
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Clueless Gent’s Rating for Reap the Wind

4.5 star rating

Reap the Wind has one of the most exciting starts to a novel that I’ve ever read! If you are not completely hooked by the end of the prologue, you are un-hookable!

This story starts with a perfectly good airplane flying into a hurricane—on purpose! True, that’s what it’s supposed to do to report the conditions of the storm, but no flight like this could ever be considered “smooth sailing!” After that prologue, the story begins in Houston, Texas, at the Four Seasons Hotel. Attorney Josh Goldberg, and other lawyers from the Philadelphia law firm he works for, are hosting an oil and gas conference for their clients. The conference is somewhat sparsely attended because there happens to be a major storm raging outside.

Near the end of the conference, Josh learns that his very pregnant fiancé Keisha has been admitted to a Cincinnati hospital following an accident as she was traveling. Josh’s primary focus now becomes getting to Keisha as soon as possible. But all the flights have been cancelled due to the storm. As Josh bounces ideas off his friend and colleague Geoff, Josh decides the only way to get to Keisha in a hurry it to get a car and drive. Josh enlists Geoff to go along to help with the driving, and then Josh’s boss, Diane, decides to tag along so she can get to an important meeting on time.

So now we have three lawyers, heading cross country into a major hurricane driving an old limo. What could possible go wrong?

That may seem like a wordy synopsis, and it is, but I couldn’t think of shorter way to tell you about the overarching storyline. There are several other storylines in the book, as well. For example, in addition to Keisha’s hospital stay, Josh and Keisha go back and forth about whether they want to get married.

This story is like the ultimate road trip, but instead of fun there is panic and danger. Yet what makes the story fun to read is the author’s marvelous description! I don’t think I’ve ever read better description of a bad storm and its impact on the environment and transportation.

“At that moment, a thick clump of leaves and small branches splattered against the window with a loud bang. Then, a gray ball crashed into the center of the glass. Claws sprang from the ball and scratched the glass for a grip. A gray squirrel. Not the flying kind, but the regular neighborhood type. He was soaked and you could see his heart pounding through his white underbelly. Shit. That dude must have flown about three hundred feet in the air to reach the twenty-eighth floor.”

I like the organization of the story. Each chapter is based on either Josh or Keisha. In the chapters with Josh, the author uses first person POV (except for one instance when he changed to third person near the end of one of Josh’s chapters), and then uses third person in Keisha’s chapters. The chapters were pretty much sequential, with only a slight overlap at times.

The four main characters—Josh, Keisha, Geoff, and Diane—are very well defined, particularly Josh and Keisha. However, the author did a great job of making their character arcs unpredictable. Nice!

There was a little bit of low-key humor, but it was very subtle. For example, the name of one of the speakers at the conference was Dr. Somebody. I don’t know if that was meant to be funny, but I took it that way. Another example is the banter between the lawyers in the limo when they try and decide what kind of music to listen to.

My only real complaint has to do with the pacing. The prologue really kicks the pacing into high gear with the plane flying into the hurricane, but going from that to a conference on oil and gas is, well…meh. However, once the road trip begins, the pacing gets going again. And that’s great. However, as the storm starts subsiding, the pacing slows. I imagine that’s the way it should be; it makes sense. (Personally, I don’t know how anyone could make an oil and gas conference more exciting than this author did.)

I happen to love climate fiction, and that was my main reason for reading this novel. However, there is so much more than climate stuff going on. It’s really quite good and very exciting at times.

I think I’d like to read more by author Joel Burcat. I like his style!

I received a free copy of Reap the Wind from Lone Star Book Blog Tours in exchange for my honest review. Opinions expressed are my own.

the Author

Author Joel Burcat Photo

Joel Burcat is an award-winning author of three environmental legal thrillers: Drink to Every Beast (illegal dumping of toxic waste), Amid Rage (a coal mine permit battle), and Strange Fire (a fracking dispute). His most recent book, Reap the Wind, is about three lawyers trying to drive from Houston to Cincinnati in a climate change-induced hurricane.
He has received a number of awards, including the Gold Medal for environmental fiction from Readers’ Favorite for Strange Fire, and as a Finalist in the Next Generation Indie Book Awards for Amid Rage. He has written numerous short stories. Burcat imbues his novels with facts to educate his readers about critical environmental issues while they are being entertained by the story.
Burcat’s books are infused with realism developed over a forty plus year career as an environmental lawyer.
Signed copy of REAP THE WIND
(US only; ends midnight, CDT, 03/15/24)

Reap the Wind tour giveaway graphic. Prizes to be awarded precede this image in the post text.

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