When Pablo Escobar, Colombia's "King of Cocaine," was killed, the world thought? or hoped? the cocaine industry would crumble. But ten years later the country's production had almost quadrupled, and since 2001, Colombia has produced more than 60% of all the cocaine consumed in the world.
Cocaine is both a curse and a salvation for Colombians. Farmers grow coca for cash but fear discovery. Families must cooperate with drug-funded guerrillas or go on the run. Destitute teens become trained killers for a quick buck in a ruthless underworld where few survive for long.
At the same time, tension grows between Colombia's right-wing government and its socialist neighbors in Latin America. With the failed US War on Drugs playing into this geopolitical brew, the future of cocaine is about more than what happens to street dealers and their customers.
Based on three years of research and more than 100 interviews with growers, traffickers, assassins, refugees, police, politicians, and drug tourists, Cocaína is a brilliant work of journalism, and an insight into one of the world's most troubling industries.
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"Starred Review. His analysis of American and European complicity in Colombia's misery, the corruption of the Colombian government and the military's terroristic collusions, racial politics, and the painful psychosocial impact of a 40-year war on drugs set this book well apart." - Publishers Weekly
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Magnus Linton is a Swedish writer whose work tackles controversial social, political, and ethical topics. He is the author of several acclaimed non-fiction books, including The Vegans (2000), a provocative account on the ethics of eating meat that turned then Swedish prime minister Göran Persson "semi-vegetarian"; Americanos (2005), a pioneering masterpiece exploring the rise of neo-socialism in Latin America; and The Hated (2012), which examines the emergence of the new radical Right in Europe. Cocaína was first published in Swedish in 2010 and was nominated for the August Prize, Sweden's most important literary award. Magnus lives in Stockholm and Bogotá with his family.
John Eason is an American translator and educator based in Stockholm. He holds a PhD in Scandinavian Studies from the University of Wisconsin, where he has taught Scandinavian literature and Swedish. John has also been a guest lecturer at the University of Illinois at UrbanaChampaign.
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