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In an underground apartment building called “the Burrow”—essentially purgatory—“twilight souls” inhabit the space between life and death. Through their stories, and the ways in which their lives, past and present, intertwine, Jim Krusoe creates a poignant tale about what constitutes a life, what remains when we die, and what we possibly
carry with us into the next world.
"What an improbable, richly peopled saga! Kimball Taylor follows his hunch so deep into the world of polleros and the borderlands where they do their human smuggling that you’ll forget you’re reading non-fiction. El Indio, his clients, the authorities, and the harsh country they all do battle with—not to mention all the merry, ubiquitous bicycles rolling through the story—this completely original concoction reads like Latin American magical realism, except it’s reported-out and grounded in fact. Wonderful stuff."—William Finnegan, author of Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life and Cold New World: Growing Up in a Harder Country
It wasn’t surprising when the first abandoned bicycles were found along the dirt roads and farmland just across the border from Tijuana—the area’s residents were accustomed to all kinds of refuse and detritus—but the bikes kept coming: mountain bikes, touring bikes, BMXs, and beach cruisers, all piling up, day after day. They went from curiosity, to nuisance, to phenomenon. But until they caught the eye of journalist Kimball Taylor, only a small cadre of human smugglers—coyotes—and migrants could say how or why they’d gotten there. This is the true story of 7,000 bikes that made an incredible journey and one young man from Oaxaca who arrived at the border with nothing but the clothes on his back, built a small empire, and then vanished. Taylor follows the trail of the border bikes as they make their way through a surprisingly diverse spectrum of society’s most powerful institutions, and, with the help of an unlikely source, he reconstructs the rise of one of Tijuana’s most innovative coyotes. Touching on issues of immigration and globalization, as well as the history of the US/Mexico border, The Coyote’s Bicycle is at once an immersive investigation of an outrageous occurrence and a true-crime, rags-to-riches, coming-of-age story.