• Deep Down Dark

  • The Untold Stories of 33 Men Buried in a Chilean Mine, and the Miracle That Set Them Free
  • By: Héctor Tobar
  • Narrated by: Henry Leyva
  • Length: 13 hrs and 22 mins
  • 4.2 out of 5 stars (901 ratings)

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Deep Down Dark  By  cover art

Deep Down Dark

By: Héctor Tobar
Narrated by: Henry Leyva
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Publisher's Summary

The exclusive, official story of the survival, faith, and family of Chile’s 33 trapped miners. When the San José mine collapsed outside of Copiapó, Chile, in August 2010, it trapped 33 miners beneath thousands of feet of rock for a record-breaking 69 days. Across the globe, we sat riveted to television and computer screens as journalists flocked to the Atacama desert. While we saw what transpired above ground during the grueling and protracted rescue, the story of the miners’ experiences below the Earth’s surface - and the lives that led them there - hasn’t been heard until now.

In Deep Down Dark, a master work by a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, Héctor Tobar gains exclusive access to the miners and their stories. The result is a miraculous and emotionally textured account of the 33 men who came to think of the San José mine as a kind of coffin, as a “cave” inflicting constant and thundering aural torment, and as a church where they sought redemption through prayer while the world watched from above. It offers an understanding of the families and personal histories that brought "los 33" to the mine, and the mystical and spiritual elements that surrounded working in such a dangerous place.

©2014 Hector Tobar (P)2014 Macmillan Audio
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History

What listeners say about Deep Down Dark

Average Customer Ratings
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Profound

Would you consider the audio edition of Deep Down Dark to be better than the print version?

Yes- narration enriched the story-telling and brought the characters to life more than reading from the printed page could invoke. Pacing and pitch were perfect.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Deep Down Dark?

Many, many- was brought to tears several times. Although the story is well known, the author introduced many different layers of contemplation.

Have you listened to any of Henry Leyva’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No, but I will definitely look for them.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes- listened in every spare moment. May listen again.

Any additional comments?

For those who liked "Unbroken", this is much, much better. The story is incredibly rich, on many levels. Author does a miraculous job of interweaving personal stories of 33 miners, their families, and the rescuers. Insightful and profound without straying from the real events and statements of the participants. One of the best "literary non-fiction" books I have ever read- on par with John Krakauer's "Into Thin Air".

13 people found this helpful

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Deep Down Dark is griping!

Would you consider the audio edition of Deep Down Dark to be better than the print version?

I loved the narrator - he has such a great voice and there's a lot of Spanish in the book, which he reads so well

What did you like best about this story?

I felt it was an excellent look at the different miners

What does Henry Leyva bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

A warm captivating voice

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes, but sadly that's not possible

Any additional comments?

I carried my amplifier and smart phone around so I could listen while I drove, cooked and did housework

3 people found this helpful

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Very good book

As a Chilean I loved the tidbits that only someone from chile would truly understand. Overall, it was a great book, a look into how humans react under great distress and new found 10 minutes of fame. I recommend it highly

3 people found this helpful

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I didn't even care by the end.

I was so fascinated by this story when it was happening. But the actual story? Kinda boring. I would have liked to know all that was happening above ground to rescue them because in all honesty, not many of the miners were all that likable. I listened to the last few chapters twice because I kept zoning off and forgot to listen. After the second time, I just quit because I didn't care anymore.

3 people found this helpful

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Deep, down... hard to review

I followed the trapped Chilean miners on the news during their entrapment and remember fearing the mine would be sealed, as one had recently been in Mexico. I also remember the joy and excitement as they all, unbelievably, came out alive months later. I looked for interviews of what happened on the news and they didn't come. When NPR recommended this book last week I was listening hours later.

The miners agreed before coming out that none of them would relate what had happened, thus making the story more valuable and all would profit together... rather than one or two individuals profiting from what happened. It was a wise choice, however, it probably caused the weakness in the book.

Hector has done a fine job meshing the experiences, thoughts and events that were experienced by 33 miners, their families, mine management and rescue workers... much like a historical documentary. It is readable, interesting and I am glad I listened, but you are always at an arms length from what is happening and hear many different views of the same event. I didn't bond to any of the miners and not being Hispanic... the names were unfamiliar and it took a good while to keep their stories straight. I personally would have enjoyed it more if told through the eyes of one miner and one of his family members on the topside.

The dynamics of 33 men trapped together, the utter failure of mine management, the politics of rescue, the details of sustaining them once found, the complications of the family camp and the chaos of freedom was interesting and I even learned about the country of Chile.
The credit wasn't wasted and I think book clubs would enjoy discussing it... but, it won't be one I go back and read again.

3 people found this helpful

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Factual Telling: How Trauma/Fame Affected Miners

This was a worthwhile listen, although I found it not as "emotional" and "riveting" as did others. The facts about how the mine collapse happened are very interesting and somewhat chilling. The telling about life underground was eye-opening; especially how individuals behaved, led, sulked, fought and survived despite the conditions and odds. The details about collaboration on the rescue efforts were amazing and of course, the ways in which families dealt with the possibility of either death or rescue of their miner(s) equally good.

More importantly, I found the details on the aftermath of the collapse/rescue even more interesting. What happens when poor blue collar workers undergo extreme stress/trauma and then are thrust into the world stage where they must negotiate greedy relatives, unethical press, and mental issues that simply won't go away? That is the part of the story I found most interesting and those individual stories are what has stayed with me.

3 people found this helpful

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Suffering underground and above

Very personal account of the Chilean miners during their ordeal underground and also after resurfacing. Narration was very good but I have never been comfortable with the convention of speaking English with a Hispanic accent to indicate that people are speaking Spanish. This practice has been abandoned in the better films.

3 people found this helpful

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Humanize story of the 33 miners

I knew that this story would end “well”, but it just made me feel trapped and claustrophobic with the Chilean miners. This story was also good at presenting each miner as being flawed humans in this crisis. It was especially important for this story to share how they struggled to survive in the cave and with each other.

2 people found this helpful

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Nothing remarkable. Rather flat.

I was hoping for a gripping tale of how 33 men survived for 67 days in the bowels of the earth. But there was little drama other than a little pettiness and a lot of posturing, above and below ground. Very disappointing.

2 people found this helpful

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Could not finish the book.

Too slow and cumbersome with the miners personal lives, daily minutiae for me to finish. I tried speeding up the narration and it helped for a while but boredom overcame me, I'm sorry to confess.

2 people found this helpful