When the San José mine collapsed outside of Copiapó, Chile, in August 2010, it trapped thirty-three miners beneath thousands of feet of rock for a record-breaking sixty-nine days. The entire world watched what transpired above-ground during the grueling and protracted rescue, but the saga of the miners' experiences below the Earth's surface—and the lives that led them there—has never been heard until now.
For Deep Down Dark, the Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Héctor Tobar received exclusive access to the miners and their tales. These thirty-three men came to think of the mine, a cavern inflicting constant and thundering aural torment, as a kind of coffin, and as a church where they sought redemption through prayer. Even while still buried, they all agreed that if by some miracle any of them escaped alive, they would share their story only collectively. Héctor Tobar was the person they chose to hear, and now to tell, that story.
The result is a masterwork or narrative journalism—a riveting, at times shocking, emotionally textured account of a singular human event. A New York Times bestseller, Deep Down Dark brings to haunting, tactile life the experience of being imprisoned inside a mountain of stone, the horror of being slowly consumed by hunger, and the spiritual and mystical elements that surrounded working in such a dangerous place. In its stirring final chapters, it captures the profound way in which the lives of everyone involved in the disaster were forever changed.
Actor and audiobook veteran Leyva provides a perfect fit for Tobar's acclaimed chronicle of the 2010 accident inside Chile's San Jose mine and the harrowing experiences of the miners who were trapped underground for 69 days. Leyva handles the Latin American accents with finesse, never descending into caricatures. His portrayals of the complicated love triangles at the center of several of the trapped men's households above ground never fail to entertain. Leyva also does a masterly job recreating the tensions surrounding matters of faith and spirituality, as evangelical Christian Jose Henriquez leads the men in organized worship services, which gradually become more polarizing. Any narrative with so many characters requires a bit of mental juggling from listeners, but it's a captivating ride nonetheless. Leyva does an excellent job building anticipation with his speech patterns and changes in intensity, and he allows the national spirit of Chile to shine through. A Farrar, Straus and Giroux hardcover.
Compelling and Illuminating.
This book sheds light not only on the events that occurred in the Chilean mining accident, but also into the psyche of the men trapped inside. The book is a spiritual journey of survival and will readjust your perspective once finished.
Deep Down Dark
What a phenomenal story of the 33 Chilean miners who were trapped underground for 69 days. This book was chosen for our book group.
It was so inspiring to read about these ordinary people who survived 2,200 feet below ground through their teamwork, faith, and the extraordinary people who worked above ground
to rescue them.
Deep Down Dark
Excellent book. Would highly recommend it.