Official Review: Path of the Devil: Camino del Diablo

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unamilagra
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Official Review: Path of the Devil: Camino del Diablo

Post by unamilagra » 06 May 2019, 11:13

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Path of the Devil: Camino del Diablo" by Dianne L DeMille, Larry Hardin, Jeff Pearce, Randy Torgerson.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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Why has the war on drugs been so difficult to win? That is the question that is explored in Path of the Devil: Camino del Diablo by Dianne DeMille, Ph.D., Larry Hardin, Jeffrey Pearce, and Randy Torgerson. This story is a non-fiction narrative of three of the authors, who worked together in the 1990s to bring down the leaders of a Mexican drug cartel operating in San Luis Rio Colorado, Mexico, just across the border from Yuma, Arizona.

Larry Hardin was a DEA agent in Yuma who was tasked with finding the perpetrators of the attempted murder of two DEA agents in 1975. Hardin’s investigation led him to the Meraz brothers and their shady world of drug trafficking. Simultaneously, Jeff Pearce and Randy Torgerson were private investigators hired by the owner of a manufacturing company to investigate one of the primary shareholders, who he suspected of using his company trucks to import drugs. The three men eventually crossed paths and joined forces in their attempt to bring the Merazes to justice. Unfortunately, they faced unforeseen obstacles, mainly from the supposed “good guys.” This shocking and provocative story delves into the levels of corruption witnessed by the authors, from American border and customs agents, to law enforcement, to politicians at the local and national level, to the CIA.

The book switches between the first-person accounts of each of the three investigators as they get deeper into the case. This way the reader witnesses the discoveries made by each of the men and how they are tied together. It also allows for the reader to get to know each of the characters as an individual and understand his motivations. I found myself getting invested in their lives and really rooting for their success.

For the most part, the novel is fast-paced and written in a way that keeps the reader wondering what will happen next. In addition to the business of the case itself, there are some humorous or interesting anecdotes sprinkled throughout the story. The reader can really get a feel for the lives of these men and what it would be like to be a DEA agent or a private investigator.

There were so many elements of this story that I found fascinating, such as the ways the cartels managed to get their drugs across the border. In this particular case, the Meraz brothers had somehow gotten their own relatives employed in positions along the port of entry to the United States. They had hired children to spray random truck tires with marijuana-infused water to cause a stir and get their own trucks through with little notice. They had even paid off dog handlers to retrain their dogs not to alert when their trucks passed through.

Despite thoroughly enjoying this book, there are some issues I need to address. The first is the lack of dates in the story. Phrases like “another time” or “a few months later” are frequently used, or a new chapter will start with no indication of the date or year at all. I realize that these are personal accounts and there may not be exact dates available for everything, but even giving an estimate of early or late in a particular year would have made it easier for me to follow along with the timeline. The other issue I have is with some of the sources that are used. The authors cite sources from CounterPunch to Breitbart and everywhere in between. It’s nice to see that the authors are open to using references from all over the ideological spectrum. However, I think that sticking to more centrist and reliable sources would improve the credibility of their story, especially given that this book takes on hot-button issues such as border security and governmental corruption.

This book could use another round of professional editing, as I found more than ten errors throughout the text. Most of these errors were minor, but given the quantity, it proved to be a distraction. Overall, I really enjoyed this story, but due to the errors and my issues with the sources and lack of dates, I rate it 3 out of 4 stars. I think there is a lot of potential here, as these issues are fairly easy fixes. I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys stories of drug cartels or federal investigations. People who prefer stories with clear-cut good and bad guys or who want to believe that the United States government is always working in the best interest of its citizens might want to skip this one.

******
Path of the Devil: Camino del Diablo
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Post by Brendan Donaghy » 09 May 2019, 05:05

I enjoy these kind of drug cartel stories - I loved watching 'Narcos' and 'Breaking Bad', that kind of thing - so I'd normally be rushing to read this. Shame that this book falls a bit short in terms of its editing and sourcing, so I may give it a miss. Many thanks for your review!

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Post by Stephanie Elizabeth » 09 May 2019, 05:27

Brendan Donaghy wrote:
09 May 2019, 05:05
I enjoy these kind of drug cartel stories - I loved watching 'Narcos' and 'Breaking Bad', that kind of thing - so I'd normally be rushing to read this. Shame that this book falls a bit short in terms of its editing and sourcing, so I may give it a miss. Many thanks for your review!
I agree. I also watched those shows so this book would be right up my alley. It is unfortunate about the lack of editing.
Great review, though!

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Post by Rachel Lea » 09 May 2019, 07:27

I always find it interesting to read first-hand accounts about actual real-life events, but I think the variable quality of the sources and the lack of solid dates in this particular book would bother me a bit. Thank you for your review!
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Post by kdstrack » 09 May 2019, 08:58

This story proves, once again, that money corrupts no matter how much power you have! Drug use will keep expanding if the number of those who are truly fighting to stop it keeps decreasing. Thanks for your informative and well-written review.

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Post by kandscreeley » 09 May 2019, 09:12

I have my own ideas about some of the reasons why the war on drugs is hard to win, but I'll refrain from sharing those here. This sounds like a fast-paced, action-packed book that would be a great read. I'll have to look into it further. It's too bad about the editing, but it seems many authors skip that step. Thanks for sharing this with us!
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Post by Prisallen » 09 May 2019, 11:08

It is really scary to think there is so much corruption in our law enforcement. I'm glad we still have "good guys" who try to take on the "bad guys". This book sounds riveting. Thanks for a wonderful review!

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Post by unamilagra » 09 May 2019, 17:56

Brendan Donaghy wrote:
09 May 2019, 05:05
I enjoy these kind of drug cartel stories - I loved watching 'Narcos' and 'Breaking Bad', that kind of thing - so I'd normally be rushing to read this. Shame that this book falls a bit short in terms of its editing and sourcing, so I may give it a miss. Many thanks for your review!
Thanks for stopping by! I'm hopeful the authors fix the issues so their book appears more professional and credible.

Stephanie Elizabeth wrote:
09 May 2019, 05:27

I agree. I also watched those shows so this book would be right up my alley. It is unfortunate about the lack of editing.
Great review, though!
Thank you for your comment!

Rachel Lea wrote:
09 May 2019, 07:27
I always find it interesting to read first-hand accounts about actual real-life events, but I think the variable quality of the sources and the lack of solid dates in this particular book would bother me a bit. Thank you for your review!
Yes, I enjoyed reading about their experiences, but I believe the addition of dates and reliable sources would lend their book more credibility in the long run.

kdstrack wrote:
09 May 2019, 08:58
This story proves, once again, that money corrupts no matter how much power you have! Drug use will keep expanding if the number of those who are truly fighting to stop it keeps decreasing. Thanks for your informative and well-written review.
Thanks for your comments! Yes, this is a huge and pervasive issue and it's disheartening to see no end in sight.

Prisallen wrote:
09 May 2019, 11:08
It is really scary to think there is so much corruption in our law enforcement. I'm glad we still have "good guys" who try to take on the "bad guys". This book sounds riveting. Thanks for a wonderful review!
Thank you for commenting! I did find it extremely fascinating, while frustrating, to read about.

kandscreeley wrote:
09 May 2019, 09:12
I have my own ideas about some of the reasons why the war on drugs is hard to win, but I'll refrain from sharing those here. This sounds like a fast-paced, action-packed book that would be a great read. I'll have to look into it further. It's too bad about the editing, but it seems many authors skip that step. Thanks for sharing this with us!
Thank you for commenting! If you check it out I would love to hear your thoughts on it!

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Post by Fazzier » 09 May 2019, 23:38

It really gives hope to see the three characters fighting drug trafficking. Society needs such kinds. Thank you for bringing this to our attention!

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Post by Nerea » 10 May 2019, 10:02

A fast-paced and suspenseful novel is what I'd love to read. I'm adding this to my want to read shelf. Well-drafted review.
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Post by Bluebird03 » 10 May 2019, 12:44

What creativity the cartels use to get their drugs across the border. It's a shame they can't use that talent and intelligence for something more positive. Excellent review! I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.

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Post by Bianka Walter » 11 May 2019, 04:20

unamilagra wrote:
06 May 2019, 11:13
There were so many elements of this story that I found fascinating, such as the ways the cartels managed to get their drugs across the border. In this particular case, the Meraz brothers had somehow gotten their own relatives employed in positions along the port of entry to the United States. They had hired children to spray random truck tires with marijuana-infused water to cause a stir and get their own trucks through with little notice. They had even paid off dog handlers to retrain their dogs not to alert when their trucks passed through.
This is super interesting.
Thanks for sharing - now I know for future :lol2:
I really enjoyed your review, thanks!
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Post by sarahmarlowe » 11 May 2019, 14:56

Despite thoroughly enjoying this book, there are some issues I need to address. The first is the lack of dates in the story. Phrases like “another time” or “a few months later” are frequently used, or a new chapter will start with no indication of the date or year at all. I realize that these are personal accounts and there may not be exact dates available for everything, but even giving an estimate of early or late in a particular year would have made it easier for me to follow along with the timeline.
Oh, my goodness, yes. That is a huge issue when trying to get a feel for the movement of the book. Good call! I enjoyed your review!
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Post by unamilagra » 11 May 2019, 15:02

Fazzier wrote:
09 May 2019, 23:38
It really gives hope to see the three characters fighting drug trafficking. Society needs such kinds. Thank you for bringing this to our attention!
Thanks for your comment!

Nerea wrote:
10 May 2019, 10:02
A fast-paced and suspenseful novel is what I'd love to read. I'm adding this to my want to read shelf. Well-drafted review.
Thanks for commenting! I hope you enjoy it!

Bluebird03 wrote:
10 May 2019, 12:44
What creativity the cartels use to get their drugs across the border. It's a shame they can't use that talent and intelligence for something more positive. Excellent review! I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.
I agree, the world would be a much better place everyone used their skills for good. Thanks for stopping by!

Bianka Walter wrote:
11 May 2019, 04:20
This is super interesting.
Thanks for sharing - now I know for future :lol2:
I really enjoyed your review, thanks!
Thanks for your comment!

sarahmarlowe wrote:
11 May 2019, 14:56
Despite thoroughly enjoying this book, there are some issues I need to address. The first is the lack of dates in the story. Phrases like “another time” or “a few months later” are frequently used, or a new chapter will start with no indication of the date or year at all. I realize that these are personal accounts and there may not be exact dates available for everything, but even giving an estimate of early or late in a particular year would have made it easier for me to follow along with the timeline.
Oh, my goodness, yes. That is a huge issue when trying to get a feel for the movement of the book. Good call! I enjoyed your review!
Thanks for commenting!

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Post by Janelle Juncos » 11 May 2019, 20:31

Those tactics you mention do sound super interesting! Sometimes fact us stranger than fiction. Great review!

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