While The Devil's Highway focuses on a particular incident, it addresses a much broader issue. Urrea uses this 2001 tragedy to study immigration from varied perspectives. He conveys the physical pain and emotional suffering of Mexicans who aspire for a better quality of life. The reader understands the complexities of illegal border crossing, the harshness of the desert corridor, and the international syndicate of human trafficking. Urrea provides a compelling understanding of the political, financial, and humanitarian aspects of the problem, from all sides of the issue.
The Devil's Highway helps the reader to develop a sympathetic attitude and broader perspective in the current "border war." The problem of immigration is not limited to Mexico. It is a natural, human tendency to strive for improvement, regardless of nationality, ethnicity, and socio-economic status. Border enhancement has become a worldwide concern today with grave consequences.