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Next Year in Havana

A Novel

THE JULY PICK FOR REESE WITHERSPOON'S HELLO SUNSHINE BOOK CLUB

A beautiful novel that's full of forbidden passions, family secrets and a lot of 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, nineteen-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.
Portrait
Chanel Cleeton is the bestselling author of Reese Witherspoon Book Club pick Next Year in Havana. She received a bachelor's degree in International Relations from Richmond, The American International University in London and a master's degree in Global Politics from the London School of Economics and Political Science. Chanel also received her Juris Docto from the University of South Carolina School of Law. She loves to travel and has lived in the Caribbean, Europe, and Asia.
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  • Chapter One

    Elisa

    Havana, 1959

    How long will we be gone?" my sister Maria asks.

    "Awhile," I answer.

    "Two months? Six months? A year? Two?"

    "Quiet." I nudge her forward, my gaze darting around the departure area of Rancho-Boyeros Airport to see if anyone has overheard her question.

    We stand in a row, the famous-or infamous, depending on who you ask-Perez sisters. Isabel leads the way, the eldest of the group. She doesn't speak, her gaze trained on her fiancŽ, Alberto. His face is pale as he watches us, as we march out of the city we once brought to its knees.

    Beatriz is next. When she walks, the hem of her finest dress swinging against her calves, the pale blue fabric adorned with lace, it's as though the entire airport holds its collective breath. She's the beauty in the family and she knows it.

    I trail behind her, the knees beneath my skirts quivering, each step a weighty effort.

    And then there's Maria, the last of the sugar queens.

    At thirteen, Maria's too young to understand the need to keep her voice low, is able to disregard the soldiers standing in green uniforms, guns slung over their shoulders and perched in their eager hands. She knows the danger those uniforms bring, but not as well as the rest of us do. We haven't been able to remove the grief that has swept our family in its unrelenting curl, but we've done our best to shield her from the barbarity we've endured. She hasn't heard the cries of the prisoners held in cages like animals in La Caba-a, the prison now run by that Argentine monster. She hasn't watched Cuban blood spill on the ground.

    But our father has.

    He turns and silences her with a look, one he rarely employs yet is supremely effective. For most of our lives, he's left the care of his daughters to our mother and our nanny, Magda, too busy running his sugar company and playing politics. But these are extraordinary times, the stakes higher than any we've ever faced. There is nothing Fidel would love more than to make an example of Emilio Perez and his family-the quintessential image of everything his revolution seeks to destroy. We're not the wealthiest family in Cuba, or the most powerful one, but the close relationship between my father and the former president is impossible to ignore. Even the careless words of a thirteen-year-old girl can prove deadly in this climate.

    Maria falls silent.

    Our mother walks beside our father, her head held high. She insisted we wear our finest dresses today, hats and gloves, brushed our hair until it gleamed. It wouldn't do for her daughters to look anything but their best, even in exile.

    Defiant in defeat.

    We might not have fought in the mountains, haven't held weapons in our glove-covered hands, but there is a battle in all of us. One Fidel has ignited like a flame that will never be extinguished. And so we walk toward the gate in our favorite dresses, Cuban pride and pragmatism on full display. It's our way of taking the gowns with us, even if they're missing the jewels that normally adorn them. What remains of our jewelry is buried in the backyard of our home.

    For when we return.

    To be Cuban is to be proud-it is both our greatest gift and our biggest curse. We serve no kings, bow no heads, bear our troubles on our backs as though they are nothing at all. There is an art to this, you see. An art to appearing as though everything is effortless, that your world is a gilded one, when the reality is that your knees beneath your silk gown buckle from the weight of it all. We are silk and lace, and beneath them we are steel.

    We try to preserve the fiction that this is merely a vacation
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Beschreibung

Produktdetails

Einband Taschenbuch
Seitenzahl 400
Erscheinungsdatum 06.02.2018
Sprache Englisch
ISBN 978-0-399-58668-2
Verlag Penguin LCC US
Maße (L/B/H) 20.3/13.1/3 cm
Gewicht 314 g
Verkaufsrang 8545
Buch (Taschenbuch, Englisch)
Buch (Taschenbuch, Englisch)
Fr. 19.90
Fr. 19.90
inkl. gesetzl. MwSt.
inkl. gesetzl. MwSt.
zzgl. Versandkosten
Versandfertig innert 1 - 2 Werktagen,  Kostenlose Lieferung ab Fr.  30 i
Versandfertig innert 1 - 2 Werktagen
Kostenlose Lieferung ab Fr.  30 i
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