The Asphalt Road

Author: Joseph Decker

ISBN 978-0-9909869-4-2 (softcover)

362 pages

For centuries, life along the Rio Grande had been one of constant strife, oppression and upheaval. In the dusty, suffocating heat of the border between Texas and Mexico, Mayor John Charles Martains ruled the city of Laredo for 24 years with a fearsome, iron grip that reached all the way to the nation’s capitol.

When the Mayor, known by locals as “El Patron,” is exposed by an outsider’s investigation into misuse of city funds, his one-man rule of the city starts to unravel. Seen from the eyes of local residents who narrowly escaped his influence — a local independent businessman, a struggling salesman, a young Army volunteer and their families — the story of Laredo is about to take a turn that will change it forever.



Joseph Decker, a native of Laredo, Texas, is an author of short stories, poetry and novels. A graduate of Texas A&M University, he has worked in the technology industry, owned an engineering firm and now directs business owners for a major university. He continues to write fiction, and also shares his thoughts on a wide range of topics — from historical to the paranormal — on the web at

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