"The so-called war on drugs is a revolving door--you take one guy out, someone else grabs the empty chair at the end of the table. It will never change, as long as the insatiable appetite for drugs is there. And it's there, in the behemoth on this side of the border."
"There is no seller without a buyer. The solution isn't in Mexico and never will be."
This is a sweeping and erudite epic tale of the drug wars.
The brutality. The corruption on both sides. The dedication and courage of most of the agents. The total disregard for human life and evilness of the cartels. The betrayals. The revenge. The resilience and bravery of the Mexican people.
The futility of the situation.
Judging by the stunning detail and astute observations, this book has been amazingly researched.
Retired DEA agent Art Keller is in self-imposed exile with a group of monks in Mexico. He's living a peaceful life as their beekeeper.
When he learns that Adan Barrera, the Sinaloa cartel leader he put behind bars, has put a $2 million bounty on his head, he knows he must leave.
Then Barrera breaks out of prison. That's what huge payoffs to the warden, guards, and politicians will get you. Art Keller is back in the DEA, in an advisory role. It will become much more than that.
"Of course Keller would find his way into the elite unit of killers. It's a natural evolution, water seeking its own level."
Barrera is back to business as usual with basically no fear of being caught.
That's the setup for one of the best books I've ever read.
Note: Dr. Marisol Cisneros is the most powerful and beautiful female character that I've ever known.
There's a scene on pages 440-441 of such beauty and fearlessness, it brought tears.
From the internationally best-selling author of the acclaimed novel The Power of the Dog comes The Cartel, a gripping true-to-life epic, ripped from the headlines, of power, corruption, revenge and justice spanning the past decade of the Mexican-American drug wars. It's 2004. DEA agent Art Keller has been fighting the war on drugs for thirty years in a blood feud against Adan Barrera, the head of El Federacion, the world's most powerful cartel, and the man who brutally murdered Keller's partner. Finally putting Barrera away ...
From the internationally best-selling author of the acclaimed novel The Power of the Dog comes The Cartel, a gripping true-to-life epic, ripped from the headlines, of power, corruption, revenge and justice spanning the past decade of the Mexican-American drug wars. It's 2004. DEA agent Art Keller has been fighting the war on drugs for thirty years in a blood feud against Adan Barrera, the head of El Federacion, the world's most powerful cartel, and the man who brutally murdered Keller's partner. Finally putting Barrera away costs Keller dearly - the woman he loves, the beliefs he cherishes, the life he wants to lead. Then Barrera gets out, determined to rebuild the empire that Keller shattered. Unwilling to live in a world with Barrera in it, Keller goes on a ten-year odyssey to take him down. His obsession with justice - or is it revenge - becomes a ruthless struggle that stretches from the cities, mountains and deserts of Mexico, to Washington's corridors of power, to the streets of Berlin and Barcelona. Keller fights his personal battle against the devastated backdrop of Mexico's drug war, a conflict of unprecedented scale and viciousness, as cartels vie for power and he comes to the final reckoning with Barrera - and himself - that he always knew must happen. The Cartel is true-to-life story of power, corruption, revenge, honour and sacrifice, as one man tries to face down the devil without losing his soul. It is the story of the war on drugs and the men - and women - who wage it.
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