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Chess With Carrizo [Kindle Edition]

J.W. Stephens , Jeran Walker
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $7.99
Kindle Price: $2.99
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Book Description

The West Texas Desert can be murder on a marriage. When Tru Marcus and a twelve year old boy in her care are kidnapped by rogue members of a Mexican drug cartel, it's up to her husband and the local sheriff to get them back. A chase leads through the night on horseback over the Rio Grande and across the Chihuahuan Desert to a hidden mountain camp in Mexico, eventually climaxing in the Mayan ruins of the Northern Yucatan Penisula.

Chris Marcus finds that he and his wife are caught in the middle of an ugly game being played by a corrupt deputy and a suave, but very angry drug lord, Jorge Carrizo. Circumstances force an unlikely alliance with a giant, well educated, Russian bodyguard in the dark recess of a forgotten Mayan tomb. The couple soon learns that a wealthy man's game board can cross half a continent and erase all ethical lines with a single phone call. Carrizo plays a deadly game of chess.

Editorial Reviews


"What makes this book different is the sense of place: the desert is real, hot, dusty, rocky, and deadly." From 5 Star review by Grady Ward, author of The Celestial Instruction

From the Author

I wanted to write a book about a married couple that did not involve an extra marital affair or divorce or even a "meet cute" scenario. A married couple that felt real to me and hopefully, to you, the readers. A marriage is built on humor,trust and love and is a partnership no matter what the circumstances happen to be. When the circumstances turn unfortunate, what happens to the marriage?

And I wanted to tell a story about west Texas and the Big Bend area along the border with Mexico. The Chihuahua Desert is one of the last true wilderness areas in the US and almost unspoiled even today which allows for amazing hiking, horseback riding and storytelling.

Product Details

  • File Size: 260 KB
  • Print Length: 254 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1470102943
  • Publisher: Pepper Ridge (March 21, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,508,159 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars first "summer read" this year May 27, 2012
I purchased this book on the advice of a friend. It is a pleasant summer read type of book. The book does not try to be profound or introspective instead it is a fast moving slightly violent adventure book. I enjoy books with an unusual setting. This one does that nicely. I have been to the area where the book is set and the physical descriptions of the dangerous desert conditions are very real. My father would have loved the inclusion of the care requirements of the horses. It always annoyed him when we watched a Western shoot-em-up movie and the hero traveled through the desert for a week on a tireless horse that seemed to require neither food or water. Realism about the effects of the desert on people and animals, not overly serious charters and a fast pace
make this book well worth reading.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This book is a non-stop adventure of a couple who would prefer to raise their Spanish Norman horses on their 100-acre desert property more than anything else.

Unfortunately, the junior relatives of cartel bosses can get bored waiting for their turn to ship drugs, bags of money--and dispose of obstacles in shallow trenches under the baking agave and ocotillo.

But the rules are different in the Chihuahuan desert, when there are rules at all.
Threatening an ex-special forces member is not a good idea. Threatening his wife is even worse. And taking the children was the worst idea of all.
If they knew what would happen to them, they would have prayed for hell instead.

Unforgiving desert tracking to Gulf escape to underwater caves. Mayan tombs to luxury drug lord getaways, Swiss accounts to plastique explosive: all just to play Chess with Carrizo.

What makes this book different is the sense of place: the desert is real, hot, dusty, rocky, and deadly. The Andalusian-Percheron horses are closer to companions and trusting friends than brute animals.

Against this backdrop, insidious force of a criminal gang meet the inexorable force of nature at the junction of the inexorable power of love.
Which will find their true mark?

I can imagine the best place to read this:
It is in the deep desert where the cholla is beginning to bed down for the evening after a sweltering summer day.
Outside the comfortable RV a mile off the county road, totally alone, his wife at a daughter's baby shower, a man is enjoying his deserved retirement. He has just popped off the top of a long-necked bottle. Its mist is beginning to drift out of its neck into the early evening.
Read more ›
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars perfect for pool or beach reading March 29, 2012
A fast moving, gripping, page turner (OK, not literally, I read it on my iPad...) It wasn't a book SO intense that I stayed up all night to finish, but it was suspenseful enough that it was the first thing I grabbed with my morning coffee, to read what would happen next! A great poolside or beach read for the summer!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brings the Southwest Desert Alive April 8, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book was written by someone who knows the Big Bend area intimately - the descriptions vividly brought the area to life. The suspense is good, the characters involving. The villains are not all evil, some are multi-faceted and the author creates a good deal of empathy with them. When the two sides come together, the action ramps up even more and takes an unexpected turn. I hope we will see more of these characters in the future. Recommended!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
By fmr
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A great read for someone needing a break from normal activities. Held my attention to the point I could not read it at bedtime. Great for a rainy day week-end. It left me wanting to know more about these characters and their life in the Southwest. Very descriptive to the point I could see the movie in my mind as I read. Hoping for sequel from this author. Enjoy !
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars close to true life May 29, 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Very good ,interesting read.Knowing and working with the author's husband and their background I can see this scenario happening.The authors, having lived in and raised horses in the Big Bend area, brings a measure of authenticity to this story.Highly recommend to others that like factual and fast read action books.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars A Modern Western
A modern Western updated for the new milenium. The simple, clear delineation between right and wrong, good guy and bad guy is refreshing in these morally ambigous times. Read more
Published on August 31, 2012 by Justin Callahan
4.0 out of 5 stars No Compromise
There have been crime-fighting husband and wife teams before, but let's establish from the start that Chris and Tru Marcus are a long way from the days of Nick and Nora Charles. Read more
Published on August 30, 2012 by Jack75
4.0 out of 5 stars An exceptionally well-written action story
"Chess with Carrizo" is a well-written action story set in the deserts of southern Texas/northern Mexico. Stephens takes you to the desert with his descriptive prose. Read more
Published on July 2, 2012 by Everett Powers
5.0 out of 5 stars For Anyone who knows the contemporary west or wants to -
...or just for someone who is a reader and loves books of the suspense genre which still can maintain some sense of humour. This book was all of that and more. Read more
Published on June 19, 2012 by Jane S. Millerick
5.0 out of 5 stars Chess with Carrizo/Kindle Edition
I was hooked instantly and loved the characters. I couldn't stop reading it, yet I didn't want it to end. Read more
Published on May 14, 2012 by tdphillips
5.0 out of 5 stars Great summer book
A perfect book for this time of year.Fast paced,interesting story.
Well worth buying,check it out.Hoping for more from this author.
Published on April 8, 2012 by Amazon Customer
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More About the Author

J.W. Stephens is a seventh generation, native Texan and has spent many years traveling and living in a variety of places around the state and the world. The most memorable have been the Big Bend Area of west Texas and New Orleans. The Stephens family breeds and shows National Champion Spanish Norman horses and shares their home with 6 or 7 large dogs at any given time. In 2011 the author lost 40% of the vision in one eye and realized if a novel was ever going to be produced, it was now or never!

"Chess With Carrizo" is J.W.'s first novel and the first in a planned series about Tru & Chris Marcus and their adventures with Jorge Carrizo. The cover artwork is all original work by the Texas artist, Jeran Walker. The author is currently writing the sequel to Chess With Carrizo - Carrizo's Heir. Expected release date is early summer of 2012.

You can follow the author on Twitter - @jwstephensbooks
Facebook -

The paperback version of Chess With Carrizo IS NOW available! Just $7.99 and eligible for free Prime shipping! If you don't have a Kindle or simply love the feel of a real book in your hands, the print version is here.


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