Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Fascinating book on the Chilean Miners

This post is the first in hopefully a series of “what I just finished reading”.

33 Men: Inside the Miraculous Survival and Dramatic Rescue of the Chilean Miners
by Jonathan Franklin

I literally couldn’t put this book down. The author had been living in Chile for a while at the time of the mine collapse and was the only reporter to get a special pass that allowed him access to the secured area.  He was able to talk with the miners while they were still underground, he listened in on conversations with psychologists and rescuers, and he was the one who actually procured the Oakley sunglasses the miners wore when they were brought out of the mine.  After the miners were rescued, the author spoke with many of them in the hospital and once they were home with their families.  

This book does not just recount everything already covered by media reports. Instead, you read about what was happening above and underground. Including interesting questions, such as:

- What else besides food and notes were sent down to the men?
- Why was the video feed that seemed live from inside the mine during the rescue was sometimes actually showing an earlier feed?
- What kind of demands the miners had? etc. etc.

This book is well written.  It effectively describes how tedious life must have been in the mine while still being an easy read. I do wish that there was more information about the men’s acclimation with their families and society (especially the miners who were juggling a mistress and a wife and how they dealt with the sudden media attention) but that would have postponed the publishing. If you remember watching the rescue live on TV while each man emerged after so many days trapped underground and were curious about what really happened in the mine, then I recommend that you pick up a copy (or as I did, get it instantly sent to your kindle).  

No comments:

Post a Comment