In considering the intersection of vice and boundaries in North America, most will probably think of drug trafficking between Mexico and the United States and the attendant social chaos that has engulfed these countries’ border region in the last several decades. To be sure, there is a chapter covering just such ground in Smugglers, Brothels, and Twine, a new essay collection edited by historians Elaine Carey and Andrae M. Marak. In her own contribution to the volume Carey tells the story of a heroin peddler who long confounded authorities on both sides of the border, but this particular account of US-Mexican drug trafficking comes with a twist: Carey’s protagonist is a woman, Lola la Chata, and she operated not during the recent heyday of the illegal drug trade but rather from the 1930s to the 1960s. So, too, does the rest of this brief collection pleasantly surprise with its...

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