Many moons ago, I wrote a column for the Gringo Gazette in Cabo San Lucas that featured all the do’s and don’t’s I knew about Mexican residential construction. When my tenure drew to a close after a couple of years, I gathered the columns together and published them as a layman’s guide to building in Baja.

Now, after twenty years residing in Mexico and almost that many operating a couple of construction companies in Baja and on the mainland, I’ve rewritten the book, fleshed it out to be current, added sections where info has changed, and have published it on Amazon, as This Old Casa – Building in Mexico 101.

Anyone wondering about, or considering building, in Mexico would be well advised to pick up a copy and read it cover to cover. It is written to keep you out of the hottest of water you could easily land in, and to help you avoid embarking on a special kind of adventure that could sour you permanently. It’s the perfect companion piece to Retirement Secrets of Mexico, and I hope anyone interested finds it helpful, or at least interesting!


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It’s finally here! The long-awaited JET volume 19, titled JET – Mayhem, is now live on Amazon and available for download. My editor says this is probably one of the best I’ve managed to cobble together, and is her personal favorite, so for whatever that is worth…

I hope you enjoy it, and look forward to plotting and writing JET 20 next year.

2023 was a crazy one, with not a ton of time to do much of anything but life, but the hope is I get more free time next year and can manage a few tomes. Guess we shall see. In the meantime, JET – Mayhem is available for your enjoyment, with my compliments!


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The latest JET, titled JET – Mayhem, is now available on pre-order at Amazon, with a release date of October 13!

It can be found here:


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I just did an interview with the lovely Pam Stack, and discussed my 18 years in Mexico, as well as my bestselling non-fiction, Expat Secrets of Mexico. Worth a 20 minute listen if you are interested in what my life south of the border is like.


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The Eighteenth novel in the JET series just went live on Amazon, and it’s a real humdinger of a book, if I don’t mind saying so myself. All the usual twists and turns, with a host you won’t see coming.

I hate to give away the plot in advance, so that’s all I’ll say, but I’d imagine those who adore the series will love this installment.

You can find the book here.


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While you’re waiting for my next JET to be released in September, I thought I would recommend another thriller to occupy your time. My friend Ernest Dempsey just released his latest book, Heavy Lies the Crown, and I think you’ll like it.

The main character, Dak Harper, is a former Delta Force operator. After his commanding officer betrayed him, he picked up a new gig from a teenage millionaire with a penchant for finding stolen artifacts on the black market.

In this story, Dak goes on the hunt for the lost Welsh Crown of Prince Llywelyn that’s been missing over 700 years. The crown was purchased on the dark web by a mob boss in London, but a young upstart murdered him and stole the crown in a play for greater power. So Dak finds himself in the midst of a turf war, faced with enemies on all fronts.

I don’t usually recommend other authors. But this story has such a fun storyline, I thought I’d suggest it. And Ernest is a nice guy. And no, I don’t owe him money. Although I’m hoping he buys the first rounds whenever he makes it down to Mexico.

If you’re looking for something to while away the time, you could do worse than Heavy Lies the Crown. And the new JET is shaping up really well – one of my better efforts, if I say so myself! So stay tuned. I’m halfway through it, and tapping my fingers to nubs to get it done.



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JET – Body Double, the seventeenth installment in the JET series (nineteenth if you count the pair of prequels) is at long last going live on Amazon!

You can find it here.

This one was a long time coming due to other commitments, and I suspect the next one will be nearly a year due to a new 12 book series I’ve agreed to co-author with a name author whose work I’ve long admired. So 2022 is largely spoken for with that occupying my time, but we shall see…


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At long last, the eleventh book in the bestselling The Day After Never series is finished, edited, proofed, and is live on Amazon!

I don’t want to say too much about it and give anything away, but it was tough to write. So tough that about halfway through I tossed the draft I had, and started again from scratch. I’m so glad I did, though, because what came out the other end of the sausage machine was infinitely superior to my original idea.

So stop whatever you’re doing and head over to Amazon and pick up your copy today. No time like the present, and nobody’s getting any younger. Hope you enjoy it.

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9 Aug 2021, by

Cheap and Easy

Somebody asked me about costs in Mexico, specifically in Colima, where I spend a lot of time these days.

I just ate breakfast. 3 eggs, scrambled with chorizo and cheese, beans on the side, with tortillas. A bottomless cup of locally grown coffee.

Cost was $4.25 USD. My friend had two giant quesadillas with chorizo inside, and coffee. Came to about the same.

Last night had a couple of beers at my favorite watering hole. $1 apiece. Pricier places may go as high as $2. Depends on the mood.

My electric bill for two months with AC running constantly in my office and all night in my bedroom: $100, or $50 a month. Gas runs about $15 a month for the water heater and dryer and stove. Water about the same.

Rent for 3BR, 3 bath houses in gated communities run from $500-$800, unfurnished. On the street, more like $400 and up.

My favorite soda is 50 cents per liter. Or about $1 for a two liter bottle. A taxi ride 3 miles across town is about $2. My cell phone with unlimited US and domestic calls, and 2 GB of data, is $10 a month. I’m on wireless everywhere I go as all restaurants have it, so I rarely exhaust that, at which point I re-up for $5 to last the rest of the month.

Homeowner’s dues on an 18 hole, 5 star golf course are about $175 a month. Gym and club membership, including two pools, two restaurants, a bar, pilates, spin, karate, aerobics classes is $125 a month, including all the golf you want to play per month (I don’t play, but still, WTAF). A visit to the hospital ER costs $25. About the same for a specialist in private practice, although you can go to a doctor next door to the plentiful pharmacies and pay $2-$5 for a general practitioner who will write a prescription for whatever ails you. And the meds will cost you next to nothing. A two tablet dose of Ivermectin costs $4. A month’s supply of blood pressure meds $10. And so on.

To say that life is inexpensive is an understatement.

Crime is non-existent in Colima, the capital city of Colima State. Which is confusing, because Colima State has a high murder rate due to cartel activity in the port city of Manzanillo, over an hour drive away, and Tecoman, which sits near the border of Michoacan and is a contested town for narco-trafficking (the cartels shoot each other’s street dealers in the bad areas on a daily basis, which is very much like Baltimore or South Chicago or Compton or Hunter’s Point or East Palo Alto or any other city’s drug dealing neighborhoods).

Colima City is 45 minutes from there, but key is that it is far inland, so off the narco-trafficking route up the Pacific coast, with really only one highway in and out, so no way for the bad guys to escape if they’re being bad. That, and in a city of 400K, everyone knows who the scumbags are, so it’s hard to be anonymous when committing crimes. Plus it isn’t a college town, so not a lot of young males between 17-22, which is the demographic that commits most petty crimes and drug offenses. Those folks go to Guadalajara, two hours away, for university and to get out of the small town as soon as they can, so there aren’t the unemployed youths that get up to no good in many cities.

Been here over a year, and loving every minute of it. Not because it’s a bargain, but because it’s a nice place to live. I’m in Guadalajara maybe 8 days a month, and in beach towns for relaxation about 5 – 7 each month, so I mix it up between the big cosmopolitan city and toes in the sand. With the money saved due to the cost of living I can easily afford a trip to PV or Barra Navidad or Nuevo Vallarta or Punta de Mita or Cabo every month without stretching the budget.

If that sounds amazingly idyllic, well, it is.

In other news, I managed to get banned from Facebook for three days by posting an opinion piece that conflicts with the official COVID narrative, including citations from official sources. It appears social media doesn’t want anyone questioning that narrative, and is working with the MSM and the world’s governments to quash any rational skepticism showing that the narrative is pure malarkey. You can find the post that got me banned, as well as several others you might be interested, at my new Russell Blake Uncensored site.


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I’m pleased to announce that I have created a new blog that will be devoted to non-authorly things that can get one censored on big tech platforms where only official narratives are allowed.

That blog is aptly titled Russell Blake Uncensored, and can be found here. You might wish to bookmark it or sign up to be notified whenever I post a new one. I’ll be covering all the topics I’m hesitant to address on my FB page for fear of anonymous “fact checkers” deciding to memory hole me for wrongthink, which is happening increasingly all over the world.

This page will continue to be dedicated to topics of interest to authors and readers of my action adventure fiction.


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