Death of a Rainmaker: A Dust Bowl Mystery
forthcoming October 2018

When a rainmaker is bludgeoned to death in the pitch blackness of a colossal dust storm, small-town sheriff Temple Jennings shoulders yet another burden in the hard times of the 1930s Dust Bowl. The killing only magnifies Jennings’s ongoing troubles–a formidable opponent in the upcoming election, the repugnant burden of enforcing farm foreclosures, and his wife’s lingering grief over the loss of their young son. (Read more here)


Advanced Press

Louis Bayard, author of MR. TIMOTHY and THE PALE BLUE EYE

Laurie Loewenstein’s vivid Death of a Rainmaker is at once an engrossing yarn, an elegant inquiry into human desperation, and a portrait of Depression-era America so searingly authentic that the topsoil practically blows off each page.


Reading Death of a Rainmaker is like slipping through time right into a 1930’s black-and-white movie. Suddenly you live in Jackson County, Oklahoma during the Dust Bowl, and you know what the cinema, hardware store, and courthouse look like. The townspeople are your family, and you care so deeply about what happens to them that you can’t tear your eyes from the pages of this book. (more…)

Dayton Duncan, author of THE DUST BOWL

As if the black blizzards of the Dust Bowl weren’t worrisome enough for an Oklahoma sheriff and his spunky wife, in Death of a Rainmaker Laurie Loewenstein piles on even more troubles: a murder victim’s corpse buried in a sandstorm, an array of possible perpetrators, a small community already riven by secrets and swirls of distrust, and a contentious election in which the sheriff’s honesty and competence are on the ballot. Like the storms themselves, the plot powers its way across the landscape and seeps into everything it encounters.

About the author

Laurie is a fifth generation Midwesterner. She grew up in Ohio. Scattered across Ohio, Illinois, and Missouri, are the birthplaces of her ancestors. She has been a reporter, and a feature and obituary writer for several small daily newspapers as well as a college writing tutor. She was among the third class of women admitted to Colgate University.  She has master degrees in history from Syracuse University and in creative writing from Wilkes University. Her novel, Unmentionables has been called “a memorable debut novel” by Ann Hood, author of The Red Thread.

When asked to recommend an author, she often names works by Barbara Pym and Edith Wharton. Her favorite Midwestern writers include Marilynne Robinson, Ray Bradbury and William Maxwell.

She currently lives in Rochester, New York, where Susan B. Anthony lived and was arrested for voting in 1872.