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The Devil's Highway: A True Story (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 19. September 2005

5.0 von 5 Sternen 1 Kundenrezension

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Synopsis

Describes the attempt of twenty-six men to cross the Mexican border into the desert of southern Arizona, a region known as the Devil's Highway, detailing their harrowing ordeal and battle for survival against impossible odds.

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Luis Alberto Urrea is author of widely acclaimed novel The Hummingbird's Daughter and 2005 Pulitzer Prize finalist for nonfiction for The Devil's Highway. A member of the Latino Literature Hall of Fame, Luis was born in Tijuana, Mexico to a Mexican father and an American mother.

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Von emigskarl am 3. September 2014
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
Wie auch in seinen Romanen, ist dieser Tatsachenbericht schonungslos und fesseln von Anfang bis Ende. Er öffnet die Augen für das, was sich als heimlicher Tod an der Grenze abspielt.
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Amazon.com: 4.5 von 5 Sternen 250 Rezensionen
101 von 118 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen "They did not have enough items to fill a carry-on bag" 31. Mai 2004
Von Sebastian Fernandez - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Urrea delivers a moving novel based on the true story of the Yuma 14, fourteen Mexicans (from a group of 26) that tried to cross the border and enter the US illegally through the Arizona desert and succumbed in the attempt. The author presents the facts efficiently and his conclusion follows: Mexicans trying to cross the border are human beings like everyone else that had the bad fortune of facing tough economic condition; they should be respected.
The author describes the conditions and historic events that lead to the beginning of the illegal immigration into the US and draws a clear parallelism with our times, when there are several tasks in the US that Americans are reluctant to do, thus illegal immigrants are needed for this. When price changes in international markets adversely affected the Mexican economy and overpopulation became a problem, some Mexicans decided to come to the US. They ended up with a comfortable life, so when others found out, a growing interest in crossing the border developed.
Organizations of coyotes were formed to provide supply for the growing demand, and the poor people seeking a better future became just a means to an end. These individuals in their attempts have to fight against the heat of the desert, thirst, exhaustion, "la migra" (Border Patrol) and the coyotes themselves. On top of this, the control at the border has intensified throughout the last years, so the groups seeking a new future have to go through more dangerous paths each time. In the case of the twenty-six Mexicans that are the center of this story, the point of entry was the Devil's Highway, a deadly desert in Arizona that has claimed numerous victims through the years.
Urrea shows his outstanding knowledge of the topic in question and uses this in his descriptions with no holes barred. One of the most shocking passages of the book was the explanation of the different stages of death by heat, which go from Heat Stress to Heat Stroke. The realism and brutality of this account left me absolutely breathless. Overall, the quality of the novel is outstanding and even though it is a tough read at some points, in the end it is extremely satisfying and enlightening.
59 von 69 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Gonzo Outrage 9. Juli 2006
Von S. Harris - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
"The Devil's Highway," is a pretty good book. Urrea sees no sacred cows - unless discussing the poor individuals who dare to cross over to the U.S. The border landscape is murderous, and the "Coyotes" that lead the illegals across are predators and gangsters. It's all about money. Urrea does his best to give each of those who suffered through the 2001 ordeal (the Yuma 14 (those that died), or Wellton 26 (the entire party), take your pick), faces, lives, hopes. They are people, and not just rotting bodies found in the desert. Still, I get the sense that "The Devil's Highway," is a bit padded. There are also a few inaccuracies (Department of Interior police as a separate body from the BLM? An inaccurate description of a Tarantino movie), which left feeling that Urrea was shooting from the hip. Given the subject matter, he can't help but hit his target (which is extended to both sides of the border), but when I see mistakes (even nitpicky ones), I wonder, whatever the book, what other ones am I missing? Further, Urrea's style will remind you of Hunter Thompson, or even James Ellroy. This is high-risk writing, that hooks a reader, but can also annoy when unnecessary slang is used. At its worst, it seems like the writer is more interested in being hip than telling the story. It's a high wire act. Urrea for the most part stays on that wire, but there were a few times where the slang gets to be annoying.

But even with a slightly padded feel to it, it's the last twenty or so pages of the "Devil's Highway" that deliver the goods. Urrea could easily expand on those twenty pages and write a new book the current state of things Mexican - and American. There were some real revelations for me - such as Mexico losing jobs to China - just like everyone else, which of course contributes to the lure of going North. How illegal immigration contributes to suppressing wages in the U.S., which is why Industry just loves the current situation. The sheer violence (and weirdness) of the border: Mexican law enforcement crossing over in pursuits and shootouts; a very disturbing wave of what seems to be connected murders of women in Juarez (it's been going on for ten years!); and of course the deadly trek north, with Hope and Death sitting in the balance, while Money holds the scales.
12 von 12 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen brings life to border policy 6. März 2013
Von christie - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
There are many sides to the immigration/border policy debate, and Urrea of presenting them all equally. The book, Luis Alberto Urrea centers around a specific group of walkers, dubbed the Wellton 26, who crossed the border, into the Sonoran desert, Arizona, with a coyote they hired to lead them to safety and a new life in the US. To avoid the Border Patrol, the coyote that was leading, took them on a new route, one which he wasn't very familiar with. This lead to a 6 day hike, covering 40+ miles, in 90-100 degree weather, resulting in 14 deaths.

Urrea uses this one situation, which as picked up by the media, and sensationalized, as a representation of a larger story. In this same year, a total of 417 died attempting unauthorized border crossings, and those are only the ones who were found. The walkers from Mexico are in a desperate search for a better life for them and their families, while the border patrol is trying to fulfill the law, attempting the capture the illegals as they enter the country, though also concerned for their safety.


The issue of immigration enforcement, and border policy is very complicated. Reading this gave me a great picture of what is going on there, and how many sides to the story there are. There are many positive changes taking place, but the US has a long way to go to find the best solution. I'd recommend this to anyone interested in learning more about border policy and the stories behind the walkers attempting to cross to a better life.
21 von 25 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen What a Journey! 21. Februar 2006
Von Books In Review - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Taschenbuch
Pulitzer Prize finalist, Luis Alberto Urrea, has written about the struggle people desperate enough to risk their lives crossing the Mexican/American border (Arizona) in search of a better life. The story itself is as old as the hills but this time, he paints a picture of the area so vividly, that if you've been anywhere in this region, you'll appreciate his descriptions even more. The people who abound, from many walks of life (and not only Mexicans), faced the oppressive heat and lack of water, not knowing where they'd land up, were brave and courageous. Urrea unfolds the account of the twenty-six men who ventured into the unknown and in search of a better life, and the "human hunt" that followed them. Their fears and dreams, the desert's own laws, and the stretch known as The Devil's Highway is all explained. Doggedly they pursue freedom but the price is extremely high, as the desert has obstacles few humans can survive. Urrea does a great job describing the officials whose job it is to patrol this particular area along the Arizona/Mexican border, as well as the brokers who help arrange these trips to freedom - usually at a high cost.
29 von 37 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Magnifico! 25. Mai 2004
Von Denise M. Caramagno - Veröffentlicht auf Amazon.com
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
Amazing book! I couldn't put it down and read it from cover to cover in one day. Urrea has a gift for language and he applies it here. This is the story of 26 men from Veracruz. Urrea could have recounted the story of how 14 of them died in the desert and left it at that. This would still be a book worth reading... but he went way beyond those confines. He took the story of those 26 men from Veracruz and put it in historical, cultural and geographical context. He opened a window onto other worlds and onto our own. He portrays the immigrants, the border patrol and even the coyote, without judgment. He allows the reader to come to her/his own conclusion. Powerful, poetic and unforgettable. I finished it and got back on line to order everything else he has published.
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