Quinones merges keen observation with astute interviews and storytelling in his search for an authentic modern Mexico. He finds it in part in emigrants, people who use wits and imagination to strike out on their own. In poignant stories from north of the border -- about Oaxacan basketball leagues in southern California and the late singing legend Chalino Sanchez whose songs of drug smugglers spurred the popularity of the narcocorrido -- Quinones shows how another Mexico is reinventing itself in America today. But most of his stories are from deep inside Mexico itself. There a dynamic sector exists. It is made up of those who instinctively shunned the enfeebling embrace of the PRI's paternalism, including scrappy entrepreneurs such as the Popsicle Kings of Tocumbo and Indian migrant farmworkers who found a future in the desert of Baja California. Here, too, are true tales from ignored margins of society, including accounts of drag queens and lynchings. From the fringes of the countr! y, Quinones suggests, emerge some of the most telling and central truths about modern Mexico and how it is changing.