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Download The Devil’s Highway: A True Story Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Devil’s Highway: A True Story Audiobook, by Luís Alberto Urrea Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (2,545 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Luís Alberto Urrea Narrator: Luís Alberto Urrea Publisher: Hachette Book Group Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: June 2011 ISBN: 9781611135749
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The author of Across the Wire offers brilliant investigative reporting of what went wrong when, in May 2001, a group of twenty-six men attempted to cross the Mexican border into the desert of southern Arizona. Only twelve men came back out.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Urrea, a poet and novelist who is also a dogged reporter on the border wars, is keenly attuned to such eloquent and awful ironies and uses them to punctuate the The Devil's Highway, a painstaking, unsentimental and oddly lyrical chronology of the traveling party's horrific trek through the Sonora.”

    Washington Post

  • “The research here is excellent, and Urrea's narration is impressive. The story unfolds in a way that is fascinating to the listener—you can almost feel the heat and smell the desperation.”

    Library Journal

  • “[This book] may not directly influence the forces behind the US's southern border travesties, but it does give names and identities to the faceless and maligned ‘wetbacks’ and ‘pollos,’ and highlights the brutality and unsustainable nature of the many walls separating the two countries.” 

    Publishers Weekly

  • “A powerful, almost diabolical impression of the disaster and the exploitative conditions at the border. Urrea shows immigration policy on the human level.”

    Booklist

  • “In this gripping book, American Book Award winner Luis Alberto Urrea tells the story of the deadly trek, the hapless immigrants, and the Border Patrol units who hunt them.”  

    Barnes & Noble, editorial review

  • “A horrendous story told with bitter skill, highlighting the whole sordid, greedy mess that attends illegal broader crossings.” 

    Kirkus Reviews

  • A National Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Karen Murphy | 2/20/2014

    " I found this book illuminating about the plight of those who attempt to cross the border from Mexico into the Arizona desert. Urrea's account is spellbinding, though I felt very sad. I want to read more of his writings. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jeweleye | 2/19/2014

    " This book puts a whole new perspective on the immigration debate now going on in the U.S. The horrific story of the people who died and almost died is one aspect of why our policies need correction. The other aspect is the power our leaders have to make decisions based, not on the people who need to work and support their families, but on business and political interests. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Allison | 2/17/2014

    " This a great book telling the true story of a group of Mexican men crossing the border from Mexico to the U.S. in Arizona. Of the 26 men, 14 of them end up dying. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ms. Land Rocks | 2/13/2014

    " Great non-fiction report on immigration. Excellent read for upperclassmen who want to learn more about our border policies. Not an uplifting book, though. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Danette | 2/1/2014

    " Especially relevant right now with Arizona and their crazy laws. This book makes it seem even more crazy. Sad story, informative, but not written as well as it could have been. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Amanda | 1/24/2014

    " Excellent nonfiction read for an Arizona native.... Very insightful on the history and politics of border crossings from Mexico to the US. The storyline focuses on a particular tragedy where 14 people died in the desert during one recent failed attempt to cross the border. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Denise | 1/21/2014

    " In this country we are so quick to judge people before we take a walk in their shoes. In this case, Luis Alberto Urrea takes his readers on a walk in the shoes of a group of illegal immigrants crossing the Sonoran desert in search of a better life, but with tragic consequences. I am in the middle of this book now, so I can't full review it, but I will say this...you have to want something pretty badly to go through this kind of hell to get it. We take for granted that people come into this country easily, but it's not easy at all. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Donna Kubiak | 1/20/2014

    " Really illuminating about what the odds are for people who try to cross deserts in the southwest. It made me really sad, but I think it's important for everyone to read about the people who actually lived and died under impossible circumstances. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sara | 1/2/2014

    " Fascinating true story of the "Yuma 14", who died in the AZ desert. The author records their circumstances both before and during the trek, including the terrible symptoms of heat stroke as well as the heroic efforts of the Border Patrol to help. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Caroline | 12/21/2013

    " While it's not a literary masterpiece, it provides amazing details about a group's journey across the Arizona border - their backgrounds, motivations, and experience. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Cathy | 12/11/2013

    " Found it to be a little bit confusing in the beginning. It's an eye-opening read about the many undocumented individuals who risk their lives to enter the country and the challenges of border patrol. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Vicki | 11/2/2013

    " Every American should have to read this book. It humanizes the immigration issue. Shocking, truly unforgettable, and reads like a thriller, except it's also a horror story. I'll never forget this book. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kim | 10/18/2013

    " Sad, yet so good! I really enjoyed this book, could not put it down... read it in 2 days, and I am not a fast reader! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Wendy | 4/23/2013

    " Urrea is a master writer, whether he's writing narrative nonfiction, poetry, short stories, or novels. This book is breathtakingly well-researched and elegantly executed. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Larissa | 3/2/2013

    " this is a non-fiction eye opener. I especially found this subject eye opening because it happens in my own "backyard" "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mary Maddux | 12/12/2012

    " These real-life stories of border crossings was compelling. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Belle | 11/8/2012

    " One of the more powerful books I've read about the human toll on the Mexican/US border. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 William | 7/21/2012

    " So far, so completely amazing. If you've read "Hummingbird's Daughter", you gotta read this one. Non-fiction, but just as tasty. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Kevin p. | 2/24/2012

    " A good introduction to the issues on the border--but it doesn't delve deep enough. For a fact presenting book, Urrea spends too much time guessing at what folks crossing from Mexico might have been thinking and doing as they died in the desert. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Natalie | 12/14/2011

    " This book delves into a very human aspect of the border crossings through the desert that most Americans would rather not think about. It is sad, gruesome, thought provoking, well written and thus a worthwhile read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jenny | 5/30/2011

    " Very interesting and thought provoking on the issue of illegal immigration. I was a little disengaged during parts of the book but the last portion where he actually chronicles the journey was very interesting. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Shari | 5/14/2011

    " This book is completely chilling and it completely broke my heart. And at the end I was left wondering how much of our humanity we're willing to lose to the absurdities of politics and policy debate. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Julia | 5/3/2011

    " Wow, this is actually a real page-turner for a piece of non-fiction. The picture on the cover is so beautiful, and the prose and vivid descriptions inside are just as poignant. I have so much to learn about trade, labor movement & globalization! "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Suzy | 4/2/2011

    " I only read about 50 pages and quit. The writing was choppy and jumped around, and I also don't care to know what the bodies look like when the find "unauthorized entrants" in the Arizona desert after making their way from Mexico. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Amanda | 3/23/2011

    " an important book, especially in light of the current MX/USA border struggle. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mary | 3/21/2011

    " Urrea's writing is like poetry as he explores the tragedy of loss that occurs on the Mexico/US border. A compelling look at the faces and families and dreams behind the statistics and sound bites. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Nicole | 3/12/2011

    " Liked this better than his fiction book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Karen | 3/4/2011

    " Everybody should read this book.
    It is incredible. We bought 5 gallon heavy duty water jugs for each car after we finished this book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Elizabeth | 3/2/2011

    " would be more stars if it didn't make me cry :( "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lindsey | 3/2/2011

    " liked the writing style; gives the view from all angles, though certainly more from the migrants' perspective than the migra; great border book for those who are interested in learning more about the politics- international and domestic (both in Mexico and the US)- that shape our borders "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jessaka | 3/1/2011

    " This was an excellent book on border crossings and horrifying as well. I can still see in my mind's eyes the mummified bodies of those who tried to cross the borders with just a cola in their hands, thinking it was just a short trip to America. "

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About the Author

Luís Alberto Urrea, 2005 Pulitzer Prize finalist for nonfiction and member of the Latino Literature Hall of Fame, is a prolific and acclaimed writer who uses his dual-culture life experiences to explore greater themes of love, loss, and triumph. Born in Tijuana, Mexico, to a Mexican father and an American mother, Urrea has published extensively in all the major genres. The critically acclaimed and bestselling author of over a dozen books, he has won numerous awards for his poetry, fiction, and essays. After serving as a relief worker in Tijuana and a film extra and columnist-editor-cartoonist for several publications, Urrea moved to Boston, where he taught expository writing and fiction workshops at Harvard. He has also taught at Massachusetts Bay Community College and the University of Colorado, and he was the writer in residence at the University of Louisiana-Lafayette. He lives with his family in Naperville, Illinois, where he is a professor of creative writing at the University of Illinois-Chicago.