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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

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Deborah
  • HOUSTON, TX, United States
  • 12-18-14

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".

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

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

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Great Story!

A well told story by an author that brought the ready into the mine and mines of the trapped thirty-three. Even though the ready knows the outcome, each chapter is riveting.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Powerful & Complex

The emotions, the struggles, the bonding, the fighting, the fears, and the hopes all told in this powerful story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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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

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

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.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Keyah
  • Atlanta, GA USA
  • 01-04-15

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.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

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.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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I felt like I was there

Hector took me into the mine, and could feel and smell it. He took into Camp Esperanza and I felt the emotions of the families!

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Story Dragged

Had a hard time staying with the story. I'm sure that being trapped in a mine for 69 days is boring and that comes through in the story.