Prepper Book Festival: Brushfire Plague Retribution + Giveaway

Gaye LevyGaye Levy | Updated May 17, 2017 (Orig - May 18, 2017)

One of the first post-apocalyptic fiction books I read was Brushfire Plague.  I liked it so much that I left a review on Amazon which is something I almost never do (shame on me).  The day the second book in the Brushfire Plague trilogy was released, I scooped it up and read it.  Finally, we have the third book, Brushfire Plague Retribution, and it is another winner.

The Brushfire Plague series by R.P. Ruggiero, for me, set the standard for survival fiction. I liked that the characters were interesting and even more important, believable.  They were strong, but they also had their weaknesses, just like we do.  Perhaps most important, the books were a reminder that no matter what happens, we need to stay in touch with our relationships and the human side of prepping.

With that introduction, I am thrilled to share an all-new interview with R.P. plus I have three copies of his book up for grabs in a giveaway.  Enjoy the interview then be sure to check in below to learn about both the giveaway and a very special offer of the eBook version of books and two.  (Hint:  99 cents!)

Brushfire Plague Retribution | Backdoor Survival

An Interview with R.P. Ruggiero, Author of Brushfire Plague Retribution

Given your background, knowledge, and experience, what do you feel are the three most important survival or prepping skills?

I’ll focus on the least talked about in our community: soft skills. I break it down as the ability to read, lead, and need people.

Reading people is a critical skill in a survival situation as it can help you separate dangerous people from those who are not. It is a fiction to think we will successfully survive a short or long-term survival situation if we treat everyone as a threat.

Skill in leading other people will also be an important skill set. Every group will have the need to keep morale up, manage the inevitable tensions and dynamics that arise between people, and harnessing people’s natural talents and skills. So, it’s easy to see the value of leadership skills.

Finally, while it’s not so much a skill as a willingness to need other people. It is an exceptionally rare person who can truly survive the breakdown of society or other extreme survival situation as a ‘lone wolf’. So, accepting that we will need other people will put you ahead of the curve. In the Brushfire Plague trilogy, I explore the soft skills and what I call Survival Leadership in some depth.

Fortunately, like hard skills, all of these skills can be developed. You can practice and learn to trust your intuition—which is something we all have and it evolved as part of our survival over the eons. You can also learn and grow your ‘emotional intelligence’, which will raise your ability to read people, notice changes, and better understand people.

There are hundreds of books and seminars on developing your leadership skills—and a multitude of ways to practice those skills in ‘normal’ life. Finally, we can all do work on growing our knowledge of why we need other people in all parts of our life—and particularly in a survival situation. Still wondering about this last one? Just remember, beyond all the skills we’ll need…we all need to sleep at some point!

What would you purchase if you only had $500 to spend on preparedness supplies?

I’d spend $100 on a quality water filter, most likely one of the gravity fed ones that can purify thousands and thousands of gallons of water. Then, I’d spend another $100 on food that is storable for a long period of time and is transportable. Finally, I’d spend $300 on a quality used handgun and some ammunition.

In my opinion, these form the basics of the Survival Triangle of water, food, and protection. Most other needs can be found or improvised.

Do you feel totally prepared and if not, what prep area concerns you the most?

I don’t think anyone is truly ever fully prepared! It’s always a work in progress. My motto is: start where you are and then take the next step. It is truly a life-long endeavor.

For me, I haven’t found the time or money to prepare for a long-term (multi-year) total collapse scenario. Thankfully, I have enough connections and relationships with other people that I might just survive this situation!

To what extent does your family participate in your personal preparedness efforts?

My family is fully supportive. We have all seen enough situations that they understand the threat is real. Without question, I still lead our family’s efforts, but they are in it as well. I will admit, as my two boys have become teenagers, it has been much harder to keep them engaged. At this age, there are a lot more things that compete for their time!

What work of fiction do you feel gives the best portrayal of what could happen in real life?

I’m a big fan of One Second After by William Forstchen. For his scenario, an EMP strike, I believe he lays out a very realistic description of how society would devolve and collapse. I believe he also does a good balancing job between focusing on how things change, as well as the people side of things.

Other, older apocalyptic works that I think do a good job are Alas, Babylon and The Earth Abides.

If there was a disruptive event and you had to evacuate, what non-fiction books or reference manuals would you take with you?

Oh, that would be long list! I’d start with The Survival Medicine Handbook by Dr. Bones and Nurse Amy.

Where There is No Doctor is another very useful medical survival tome. I’d certainly grab my copy of the SAS Survival Handbook by Lofty Wiseman. From there, I’d grab some of my reference books on carpentry, electricity, and mechanical repairs.

Do you have anything else, such as an announcement, message, personal experience, that you would like to share with the readers on Backdoor Survival?

Certainly, I hope that your readers will take a look at the Brushfire Plague trilogy. I think they’ll find it a great and entertaining read that has a lot of useful survival lessons woven throughout it. It also makes a great introduction to friends or family who don’t yet get the need to prepare. You can find them in paperback or e-book format on both Amazon and or visit for more info! Finally,

I’d just close with what I started with: build up your ‘people skills’ as they will serve you well in any survival situation.

The Giveaway

R.P. has reserved three copies of his book in this newest Book Festival Giveaway.

A special word about the giveaway question/comment:  Please read the question and respond accordingly, even it the answer is “I don’t know”.  This week’s question is:

What character trait would you be most likely to seek when either starting of joining a survival community?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

The deadline is 6:00 PM MST Tuesday with the winners notified by email and announced on the Rafflecopter in the article.  Please note that the winners must claim their book within 48 hours or an alternate will be selected.

Note:  Due to customs requirements, this giveaway is only open to individuals with a mailing address in the United States.

A Special Offer on The Brushfire Plague, Books One and Two

To celebrate Brushfire Plague: Retribution being featured this week in the Prepper Book Festival, the publisher, Prepper Press, has dropped the price of the eBook versions of Brushfire Plague and Brushfire Plague: Reckoning to just 99 cents each.

This promotion will run for just one week and I urge you grab one or both.  I know you will love these books!

The Final Word

When I left a review on Amazon, here is what I said:

“Every once in a while, a survival novel  crosses my path that is not only a relaxing and entertaining read, but also a thought provoking primer on dealing with the unexpected consequences of the breakdown and collapse of society.  The book Brushfire Plague, by R. P Ruggiero is such a book and I do not say this lightly.”

Ditto for Brushfire Plague: Retribution. You will not be disappointed.

For more information about the books in this latest book festival, visit Prepper Book Festival 14: Books to Learn, Prepare, and Be Ready for Anything.


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Spotlight:  Brushfire Plague: Retribution

They say “Only the Truth Can Set You Free.”

In the thrilling conclusion to the Brushfire Plague trilogy, Cooper Adams is on the run in a world ravaged by a virulent plague and the shattering consequences from the conspiracy he has unearthed. His perilous journey has him facing danger at every turn, finding new allies, and stirring up a budding rebellion.

As he is pursued by authorities bent on silencing him, he remains doggedly on a path to bring justice to the governor of Oregon—who remains at the center of the plot that dismantled America.

Will Cooper survive the violence and disease that is destroying the country he once loved? As his young son spirals downward amidst the decay, can he help him maintain his humanity? How can he finally confront the governor and deliver justice for the millions upon millions dead—including his wife?

Bargain Bin: For your convenience, here is a complete list of all of the books in the Backdoor Survival Prepper Book Festival #14.

Non-Fiction Books

Off Grid and Free: My Path to the Wilderness
Watch Your Back: How to Avoid the Most Dangerous Moments in Daily Life
The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy, Revised and Expanded
Survive in Style: The Prepper’s Guide to Living Comfortably through Disasters
Centerfire Rifles: A Buyer’s and Shooter’s Guide: Special AR-15 Section Included
The Prepper’s Canning Guide: Affordably Stockpile a Lifesaving Supply of Nutritious, Delicious, Shelf-Stable Foods
Life on a Mountain Farm
SmartMom’s Guide to Essential Oils: Natural Solutions for a Healthy Family, Toxin-Free Home, and Happier You

Survival Fiction

Brushfire Plague: Retribution
Alone: Beth Ann’s Story of Survival
Without – A Survivalist Novel


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Third Edition:  The SURVIVAL MEDICINE Handbook

A frequent question I get on Backdoor Survival has to do with healthcare matters when there is no doctor around. This is the definite source of survival medical information for all Prepper’s and is my go-to bible for survival medicine.

Survival Medicine Handbook 2016



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Updated May 17, 2017
Published May 18, 2017

56 Responses to “Prepper Book Festival: Brushfire Plague Retribution + Giveaway”

  1. I don’t have the experience to know the answer. I would have to use my gut instinct.

  2. I would look for others that have a survival mindset and strong Christian beliefs like me.

  3. I don’t know what to look for in other members of a group I would join or form.

  4. I would seek out people who do things, rather than people who just talk.

  5. I’ll start with I”‘m not sure” and guess that I’d look for people with skills that are willing to share them. Example, I know i have a neighbor that is a doctor however they never come out of their house. The question is whether they would be helpful.

  6. Honesty would be my initial thought but that may be too idealistic. Hard working country folks with a Christian background would also capture many of the morals and ethics I would seek. They also would have many of the skills needed and raw experience for survival.

  7. Jacks of all trades and Masters of some.

  8. I’d look for people that are independent and see government assistance as a liability versus an asset. And would utilize it as the absolute last resort when in need of aid.

  9. What character trait I would like to see is a Team player. Lone wolf is hard to deal with most of the time.

  10. I would probably seek to be cautiously confident when starting or joining a survival community. The saying, “Trust, but verify” in a survival situation I believe becomes much more difficult because people can be very deceptive, whether you’ve known them for a long time or just met them. Going with my gut instinct seems easier if my feelings are negative, while much more difficult to discern when they are positive. I’ve mostly lived my life trusting people until they gave me a reason not to trust them. However, in a survival situation, I’m guessing that all bets are off. Most people have survival instincts and the depths to which a person will go, especially when it comes to a parent protecting a child can be a bit scary. One slip could be very costly: my life, my stocks, my sanity.

  11. like your contest, I even won a book once. thankyou

  12. I was offered a chance to join a survivalist group once. They had it all as far as I was concerned. They had people with a variety of skills. I was offered to join them because of my experience in aquaponics. Every member had a needed skill. They had many acres of land in the Smoky Mountains away from the heavy populations. They had the means to store truck loads of dehydrated foods and living units for all members. They had many military veterans. They did NOT want trigger happy comandos. My kind of place. But.
    I’m prepping for my children and grandchildren and they weren’t invited. Spouses only.

  13. Integrity.

  14. Christian survivalist.

  15. compromise and adaptability to changing situations are key aspects to being able to work with a group

  16. Integrity – I would want someone who was basically honest and honorable.

  17. I’m not sure.

  18. People who keep their religious beliefs to themselves. No bible-thumpers.

  19. Skills, integrity, honesty and faith.

  20. You asked for “character trait” as opposed to skill set, so I would say …………. common sense/good judgment. There is little room for stupid people in an apocalypse.

  21. Survival mindset, honest & dependable, trustworthy. If they won’t watch my back, I’ll look elsewhere and take my skills with me.

  22. Only one? Tough to do. I would need this person to be Trustworthy.

  23. Someone who is a strong, level headed person that get along with almost everyone.

  24. Trustworthy

  25. strong Christian values, ability to do things or figure out how, willing to learn.

  26. Someone that is calm, doesn’t get flustered easily. No one or group needs someone that will panic easily.

  27. Someone who has, and knows how to use, many weapons and much ammo.

  28. Servant leadership – basically this means a team first philosophy rather than self preservation. It’s going to take a community of skills/resources to survive something like this.

  29. I don’t know.

  30. Living in Australia – I need to read about bushfires – stay calm for sure, but what then?

  31. Character trait – creative we will have make do with what we have

  32. Not sure. Trust maybe.

  33. Belief in God, integrity and hard working work ethic would be a start.

  34. Willingness to teach skills they have and learn skills from others.

  35. Level head, common sense, skills, empathy for fellow group members and their limits, listening skills of everyone’s thoughts and ideas in the group and team work. Not going to look or stay with a dictatorship group. We are not followers, we are leaders and Get It Done Right the first time people.

  36. I think leadership skills are very important in any disaster scenario, so I’d seek like-minded individuals with a wide representation of skills and knowledge with a strong leader.

  37. The top thing I would look for? Common sense, I think…and level-headedness and fairness… Hard to pick just one.

  38. Common sense and skills

  39. Integrity

  40. Integrity.

  41. I would look for people who are willing to cooperate with the group but strong-minded enough to say “No” when necessary.

  42. Willingness. I need someone who will do what it takes and has already started down the path.

  43. Being older, I would seek out a community that had someone with good medical knowledge. I am beginning to study more about herbal meds and essential oils to help us out.

  44. Someone who is decisive,empathetic and has homesteading skills.

  45. If starting a mutual assistance group I would seek people with integrity, resources and skills that the group needs. If joining such a group I would seek one with a leader dedicated to the preservation of their community and who respected personal freedom.

  46. There are so many responses before me that I would agree with. Strong, Christian, cooperative, organized, etc.

  47. That’s difficult to narrow down — traits such as being trustworthy, having a strong work ethic, being a team player, being level-headed and calm, and being adaptable would probably top off my list.

  48. Some people are natural born leaders. That doesn’t mean it’s the bossiest person in the group but someone who can motivate others in the group. A leader would know what each persons strengths and talents are and then know how and when to call on those people when the need arises even children. While it would certainly be helpful if that person possesses a plethora of skills that she or he can teach others as long as they are a person who can draw out the skills of others it would help the entire group. A person like that would also be able to handle stupid squabbles in the group as well so that all are motivated to work together for their survival.

  49. I would be looking for people who were cooperative and fairly self-sufficient.

  50. Get to know a healer

  51. I can lead. I have and do that on a daily basis. DH is better at reading ppl than I am. As for needing ppl, that’s one I need to work on too. I tend to take responsibility and take too much on myself.

  52. Wisdom…

  53. Loyalty

  54. I’m not sure, though probably people who are offering to help/work with you not just expect you to take care of them

  55. Strong Christian values.

  56. Honesty


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