Amexica (The Bodley Head)
Amexica provides the first full account of the terror unfolding along the US-Mexico border. An area of land more than 2,000 miles long and 100 miles wide - effectively a country in its own right - has become a battleground. Drugs, guns and killings are the currency of everyday existence as an ever-escalating narco-war explodes out of control.
In the last three years more than 23,000 people have been murdered in Amexica as criminal drug cartels fight each other - with ever more inventive twists of violence - for pre-eminence in the 'plazas' - the rivers of narcotics flowing into America, and for consumption in Mexico itself. The war is a grotesque pastiche of the globalised economy: the cartels are inextricably bound up with sweatshop factories, with the smuggling of guns south from the US, with the entertainment industry and with the mass abduction and exploitation of women.
This is both the busiest and most deadly frontier in the world, studded with guard-posts, infra-red searchlights and heavily armed patrols. It's a war that's scarcely reported - a war that's being fought, with thousands dying and millions of lives blighted, so that Europe and America can get high.
Journalist Ed Vulliamy has long had a love-hate relationship with Amexica - the place and its people. For four months he went on a road trip zigzagging along the entire border. This is the story of that journey and of the visits that preceded it; of the causes and consequences of the war and its impact on the everyday life which somehow goes on around it.