Happy Tuesday bibliophiles!
Today is publication day for Chanel Cleeton’s When We Left Cuba(and I will have a review for that on Thursday). But I wanted to read this book before I started the second book and I’m sure glad I did! It was so beautifully told and so steeped in history… a brilliant read!🇨🇺
An exquisitely told story steeped in history and Rich with love!
Chanel Cleeton has expertly woven together threads of the present and the past. This is the story of two strong women, grandmother and granddaughter, bonded by blood and a love for Cuba. A story of love for a boy, for a land, for a family, for a culture. Admittedly I know very little about Cuba and it’s history, and I found the history lesson I got from this book exceptional. Miss Cleeton skillfully brings Cuba to life with her words. The sights, the sounds, the vibe,in both 1958 and present day.
Cuba 1958, Elisa lives a privilege life as the daughter of a sugar Barron. She has been pretty sheltered from the political goings-on in Cuba, that is until she falls in love with a revolutionary. The problem is her family is in support of the president, on the other side of the issue. When the president falls and Fidel Castro takes over, Elisa and her family flee to the United States. Present day, Marisol is destroyed when her beloved grandmother who raised her passes away. Her grandmother’s last wish is to have her ashes spread in the country she loved, Cuba. This requires Marisol to travel to Cuba where she finds a land far different from that that her grandmother told her about. She was not expecting the poverty, the food shortages, the lines. Determined to find the perfect location to scatter her grandmothers ashes Marisol discovers her grandmother secrets. She also discovers the real Cuba and a love for a man.
This was a wonderful story that captured my attention and my heart. Both Elisa And Marisol were interesting and likable characters. I was slightly more drawn to Elisa’s story simply for the history. Although I like getting to know about present day Cuba as well. I think it just came down to the fact that I enjoyed one of the love stories over the other a little bit. It always comes down to the love!
Beautifully told… drenched in history, culture, family, and love! Absolutely recommend!
*** many thanks to Berkley for my copy of this book ***
About the Book
A Reese’s Book Club x Hello Sunshine on Audible Pick
“A beautiful novel full of passion, secrets, courage and sacrifice.” (Reese Witherspoon)
After the death of her beloved grandmother, a Cuban-American woman travels to Havana, where she discovers the roots of her identity – and unearths a family secret hidden since the revolution
Havana, 1958. The daughter of a sugar baron, 19-year-old Elisa Perez is part of Cuba’s high society, where she is largely sheltered from the country’s growing political unrest – until she embarks on a clandestine affair with a passionate revolutionary….
Miami, 2017. Freelance writer Marisol Ferrera grew up hearing romantic stories of Cuba from her late grandmother Elisa, who was forced to flee with her family during the revolution. Elisa’s last wish was for Marisol to scatter her ashes in the country of her birth. Arriving in Havana, Marisol comes face-to-face with the contrast of Cuba’s tropical, timeless beauty and its perilous political climate.
When more family history comes to light and Marisol finds herself attracted to a man with secrets of his own, she’ll need the lessons of her grandmother’s past to help her understand the true meaning of courage.
💕💕 Be sure to check out all the Besties’ reviews!