Friday, February 28, 2020

Book Review - Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton

Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton is a find the roots of identity story set amidst revolution and change. I enjoyed it due to the setting - Havana, Cuba, and the book made me curious about that period of history. I need to do more research and learn more about our island neighbor/foe.

Havana 1958 - Elisa Perez, daughter of a sugar baron, is sheltered from the country's political unrest until she falls in love with a revolutionary. Yes, it's a bit soap opera, but well written and Elisa is not a simpering fool. She has character and stands out from her sisters.

Miami 2017 - Marisol Ferrera loved hearing romantic stories of Cuba from her late grandmother Elisa, who had to flee her beloved land. Now Marisol, a freelance reporter,  is returning to Cuba to spread her grandmother's ashes and uncover secrets about the family. And, thank goodness, she meets her own revolutionary.

So much to learn, so little time, and the backdrop appears beautiful and sad at the same time. Rich, poor, and a restless undertone to life mingled with a rising heat. 

cover blurb - Marisol will need the lessons of her grandmother's past to help her understand the true meaning of courage - and what it means to be Cuban.

This is my PA groups' book club pick and we'll have plenty to discuss - character, history, choices, regrets. Always good themes. Sip a drink with an umbrella in it and enjoy a breezy read.


  1. Sounds like a superb book Joanne. Have a great weekend.


    1. thanks. I think the Cuba setting made it better

  2. It really does sound like a good book, but I dunno if it sounds "breezy." I'm woefully lacking in knowledge about Cuba, so this book probably has a lot to teach me. And pique my interest. (Any book that stirs a reader to do more research on a topic is a good one... in my book. HA)

    Have a super weekend.

    1. well, the breezy effect was it was a tad predictable in regards to relationships and I could skim a bit. Maybe I've read too many of these "find yourself" books. The bad/good guys are way too dreamy than what real life would be. I'm a bit jaded.
      oh well. But yes, I need to know more about the whole Cuba situation. A friend just visited there and said the people were great, old cars were a blast from the past, and the poverty was insane. So there you go.

  3. I don't know much about Cuba either. This sounds like one that could teach me a few things. I know what you mean about characters that are too dreamy or unrealistic, but an occasional romance is good for an escape for me.