by Gil Miller

Cover: Startup
Part of the Rural Empires series:

Just when he thinks he’s clear of the meth business, Lyle Villines gets busted cold cooking for a friend. After his arrest, he’s approached by a DEA agent who wants him to work as an informant—and take down someone high up in a Mexican cartel. It’s a tall order for a small-time player like Lyle, but one he can’t refuse. If he doesn’t do it, he’ll only be seeing his kids during prison visiting hours.

He goes back into business and is immediately confronted by two local thugs who want a piece of the action—either he cooks for them, or he doesn’t cook at all. Searching for a way around them, he meets Carl and Zeke Higgins, members of a local family distributing meth for the Sinaloa Cartel. Before he knows it, he’s so far in he can’t get out.
The only way to go is up—all the way to the top and cartel leader Joaquín Guzmán himself. Along the way, he has to deal with the local thugs and a Kentucky family hell bent on holding his bosses hostage.

And in the end, what Guzmán asks of him might be too much. (374 pages)

Publisher: Shannon

About the Author

Gil had a normal upbringing, which means his parents aren’t to blame for him going into crime (fiction). Instead, he blames a steady diet of movies, shows, and books, from Miami Vice and Scarface in the ’80s to Breaking Bad and Justified in the ’00s. To cap it all off, he discovered authors such as Michael Connelly, Robert Crais, Don Winslow, and the late, great Elmore Leonard. Gil is a member of the Northwest Arkansas Writers Workshop, whose members sometimes wonder where he gets his inspiration. He makes his home outside Fayetteville, where he is at work on the next of his Rural Empires novels.

Gil maintains a blog at

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