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The Southwestern border is one of the most fascinating places in America, a region of rugged beauty and small communities that coexist across the international line. In the past decade, the area has also become deadly as illegal immigration has shifted into some of the harshest territory on the continent, reshaping life on both sides of the border.
In Hard Line, Ken Ellingwood, a correspondent for the Los Angeles Times, captures the heart of this complex and fascinating land, through the dramatic stories of undocumented immigrants and the border agents who track them through the desert, Native Americans divided between two countries, human rights workers aiding the migrants and ranchers taking the law into their own hands. This is a vivid portrait of a place and its people, and a moving story of the West that has major implications for the nation as a whole.
“Portrays [its] characters with rare objectivity; Ellingwood writes with compassion for people on both sides of the border. . . . At times the stories become as dramatic as any good fiction.” —The San Diego Union-Tribune
“The bodies moving north across the border are stories. This is a book as much about people as it is about policy. Ken Ellingwood has gathered here the voices with compassion, with wisdom.” —Sandra Cisneros, author of The House on Mango Street
“Well chronicled. . . . Eminently readable.” —San Francisco Chronicle
“Ellingwood has thoroughly and compassionately catalogued the stories of the major players in the border saga. . . . Disturbing and graphic.” —The Washington Post Book World
“Skillfully charts the devastating effects . . . on migrants and the communities receiving them. Ellingwood seamlessly moves between a cogent policy analysis, an overview of the border’s early history, and stories of migrants, ranchers, border patrol agents, human-rights and church activists.” —LA Weekly