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“To experience the heart and soul of Cuba — and to have one’s own heart and soul touched by the experience — you have to put down the guidebook, forget your pre-conceived notions of what you should be doing and follow these five steps.”Read this blog
“There is an ongoing debate in the international media about whether Cuba is changing politically or not. Long before Fidel Castro’s recent death, the reality is that Cuba is changing. The better question is: In which direction will Cuba go?”
Recommended Reading for Your Trip To Cuba
The Cuba Reader: History, Culture, Politics by Aviva Chomsky (Editor), Barry Carr (Editor), Pamela Maria Smorkaloff (Editor)
Organized chronologically, this multi-faceted portrait of a nation, with most of the selections by Cuban writers, includes not only history, journalism and literature but also songs, paintings, poems, cartoons and speeches.
Cuba by Pierre Hausherr (Photographer), Francois Missen
With full-page photographs, introductory essays on history, architecture, music, food and more, this oversized, illustrated paperback by Pulitzer-prize winning journalist Francois Missen and photographer Pierre Hausherr captures the spirit of Cuba, its people, nature and culture.
Trading with the Enemy by Tom Miller
Miller captures the openness, sensuality and pride of Cuba and the Cubans in this eloquent account of entertaining travels in Fidel's Cuba.
Listen, Yankee, Why Cuba Matters by Tom Hayden
With an unabashedly liberal bias, Hayden insightfully covers the often troubled relationship between these two nations and brings readers to the present with consideration for the future of U.S.-Cuban relations.
The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
The best-known novel about Cuba written by a non-Cuban author. The story tells of a Cuban fisherman’s best catch and his enduring spirit. The novel won Hemingway the Nobel prize and was inspired by the many years he spent on the island.
Che Guevara, A Revolutionary Life by Jon Lee Anderson
A revised and updated edition of Anderson's definitive biography, published to mark the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Revolution.
Cuba, What Everyone Needs to Know by Julia Sweig
Director for Latin America Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations, Sweig traces the geography, history and identity of Cuba in this admirably succinct history of the island nation and its role in world affairs.
Our Man in Havana by Graham Greene
The story of a British vacuum cleaner salesman who gets accidentally drawn into Cold War espionage with disastrous (and hilarious) results. Published in 1958, months before Castro and his men swept into Havana, the story is a portrait of an immensely corrupt, pre-revolutionary society.
Hemingway's Boat: Everything He Loved in Life and Lost by Paul Hendrickson
Focusing on the years 1934 to 1961, from Hemingway's pinnacle as the reigning monarch of American letters until his suicide, Paul Hendrickson traces the writer's life through the story of his beloved boat, Pilar.
Dreaming in Cuban by Cristina Garcia
A short, poetic novel of three generations of Cuban women, their reaction to the revolution and the complex relation between those who remained in Cuba and those who settled in the United States. Excellent reading.