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Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite
Across The Border by Scott Schuff and Jim Bullard opens with a shocking scene that indicates what you are about to read in this gripping action crime novel. Two young couples died from ingesting heroin and were found by a homeless man who robbed them of their belongings. This becomes symptomatic of a larger concern as former Navy SEAL and CIA covert operative Jason Maines, while ostensibly deer hunting on his mission, witnesses a Sicario murder two men as cartels fight one another to monopolize the best smuggling routes in the U.S. The Sinaloa-Durango Cartel’s tentacles have extended into the higher echelons of American government and law enforcement. Maines has been given the task to assemble a covert DEA team with a single imperative: crush the SDC. In doing so, he must unlearn his military orientation as he discovers that the SDC couldn’t care less about codes of honor.
Part of Scott Schuff and Jim Bullard’s impressive story is the development of its protagonist. Jason is an observer and a well-informed leader on this journey. He is clearly in charge of what’s happening and you get a sense of a well-organized operation. Across The Border, at its core, is about a world in which the execution of strategies and logistics determines victory against the drug war. It makes sense that it features a well-trained protagonist, but doesn’t necessarily mean that it is going to be easy for him. This makes for a novel with enough emotional punch to pass as a high-octane action thriller in which you will find a satisfying final act. Across The Border meets expectations when it comes to narrating about a world infested by criminals and what could be done to trim their numbers.