Ed Earl Burch, a cashiered vice and homicide detective, has his life narrowed down to chasing financial fugitives from the carnage of the oil bust and savings and loan crash that scarred Dallas in the mid-1980s. Throw in the occasional wayward spouse and a ready eye for the next round of bourbon, sipped with a boot resting on the rail of his favorite saloon.
He’s an ex-jock gone to seed, a private investigator with bad knees and a battered soul. He’s trying to keep at bay the memories of three ex-wives, the violent mistakes that got him booted off the force, a dead partner and the killer who got snuffed before Burch could track him down.
Play it smart and cautious. Keep the lines straight. Don’t take a risk. Don’t give a damn. It’s the creed of the terminal burnout and he’s living it a day at a time, drink by drink.
That all changes when Carla Sue Cantrell, a short blonde with ice-blue eyes and a taste for muscle cars, crystal meth and the high-wire double-cross, walks into his life. Pointing a Colt 1911 at his head, she tells him his partner’s killer, a narco named Teddy Roy Bonafacio, is still alive. She forces him into a deadly game where Burch is framed for murder and chased by cops and the narco’s hitman, a nasty piece of work named Willie “Badhair” Stonecipher.
Burch and Cantrell are on the run through the scrubby Texas Hill Country, home of the sixth largest bat cave in the world, and the high desert of El Paso and northern Mexico. They’re gunning for the same man both want dead – Bonafacio.
Known as T-Roy or El Rojo Loco, he’s surrounded himself with powerful allies at a rancho on the Mexican side of the border, including an old bruja and her sons who have a taste for human sacrifice rooted in the way of the ancient Aztecs.
Final destination – kill or be killed.
Take a waltz across Texas with Ed Earl Burch and Carla Sue Cantrell. It’s one helluva dance.