Down by the River by Charles Bowden
Drugs, Money, Murder, and Family

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Lionel Bruno Jordan was murdered on January 20, 1995, in an El Paso parking lot, but he keeps coming back as the skeleton key to a multibillion-dollar drug industry, two corrupt governments -- one called the United States and the other Mexico -- and a self-styled War on Drugs that is a fraud.

Phil Jordan runs DEA intelligence, but when his brother Bruno is killed, he is powerless. Amado Carrillo Fuentes runs the most successful drug business in the history of the world, but when his usefulness to governments ceases, he mysteriously dies in a hospital. Carlos Salinas runs Mexico, but as soon as he leaves office, his brother is jailed for murder and Salinas flees into exile. Sal Martinez, DEA agent and Bruno's cousin, does the secret work of the U.S. government in Mexico, but when he seeks revenge for his cousin's murder, he is sentenced to a term in federal prison.

Beneath all the policy statements and bluster of politicians is a real world of lies, pain, and money.

Down by the River is the tale of how a murder led one American family into this world and how it all but destroyed them. Of how one Mexican drug leader outfought and outthought the U.S. government. Of how major financial institutions fattened on the drug industry. And how the governments of the United States and Mexico buried everything that happened.

All this comes together down by the river, a place where the fictions finally end and the facts read like fiction. This is an unforgettable American story about drugs, money, murder, and family.


About Charles Bowden

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Journalist Charles Bowden has written eleven previous nonfiction books, including Blood Orchid, Trust Me, Desierto, The Sonoran Desert, Frog Mountain Blues, and Killing the Hidden Waters. Winner of the 1996 Lannan Literary Award for Nonfiction, he lives in Tucson, Arizona.
Published November 8, 2002 by Simon & Schuster. 448 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Political & Social Sciences, Education & Reference. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Sprawling, lacerating account of the drug war along the Mexican border, which is nothing but a slow-motion holocaust, according to veteran nonfiction author Bowden (Blues for Cannibals, 2001, etc.).

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Publishers Weekly

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The Mexican government was implicated in the drug trade all the way up to the office of then-president Carlos Salinas, and Bowden talks with former Mexican officials who fled to the U.S. to avoid being killed off.

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Star Tribune

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In his 12th nonfiction book, "Down by the River: Drugs, Money, Murder and Family," Bowden charts a seven-year investigation into the murder of Bruno Jordan, an El Paso suit salesman who wanted to be a lawyer.

Nov 16 2002 | Read Full Review of Down by the River : Drugs, Mo...

Entertainment Weekly

You lost.'' Originally posted Nov 22, 2002 Published in issue #683 Nov 22, 2002 Order article reprints

Nov 22 2002 | Read Full Review of Down by the River : Drugs, Mo...

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