Monday, July 16, 2012

Los 33 – The Chilean Miner Rescue

Franklin, Jonathan.  33 Men: Inside the miraculous survival and dramatic rescue of the Chileanminers.  New York: Putnam, 2011.

Lusted, Marcia Amidon.  The Chilean Miners’ Rescue.  Minnesota: ABDO Publishing, 2011.

The Chilean miner rescue was, though now old news, one of the most sensational project management efforts of this millennium – sensational in the sense that it played out on the international stage in real time.  I’ve read these four books trying to get the PM story, but was sorely disappointed.  I’m aware that a PM involved in the rescue spoke at one of the South American PMI conferences, but I haven’t seen anything published specific to the PM effort.  I really expected to find something in PM Network or PMI Journal, but haven’t seen it yet.  If you know where I can find the PM story of the rescue, please post in the comments.

As for these four books, Buried Alive (Toro) is the only one I can recommend, but it is mostly a report of the public records and events.  Most of the story is what is happening on the surface, with very little insight from the Los 33.  If you can get past the exaggeration and sensationalism, 33 Men (Franklin) provides the missing story of what happened underground.
33 Men (Franklin) was the first out.    Attempts to sensationalize controversial relationships, to the extent of creating things that may not exist.  Not well written.  Not recommended.

Chilean Miners’ Rescue (Lusted) is a juvenile version for early middle schoolers.  Seems to follow the narrative of 33 Men closely, but sticks to the facts and leaves out the sensationalism.

Trapped (Aronson) is aimed at an older juvenile audience (late middle school or early high school).

Buried Alive (Toro) consolidates the public events.  Includes short interviews with two of the miners.

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