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Havana Real by Yoani Sánchez
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Havana Real (edition 2011)

by Yoani Sánchez (Author)

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332347,362 (3.2)2
Member:hnn
Title:Havana Real
Authors:Yoani Sánchez (Author)
Info:MELVILLE HOUSE PUBLISHING (2011), 256 pages
Collections:Your library, Ordered
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Havana Real: One Woman Fights to Tell the Truth about Cuba Today by Yoani Sanchez

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Havana Real by Yoani Sanchez is a collection of her posts from Generation Y, a blog she maintains through the help of friends in Spain. Cuba is none to keen on allowing internet access, especially blog access, so maintaining a blog under these conditions takes a certain amount of creativity and a hell of a lot of gumption.

The Melville House book presents Sanchez's blog posts in chronological order and they are left to stand for themselves. Sanchez outlines how things work, or more often than not, don't work in her neighborhood, and in Cuba as a whole. There are a number of entries devoted to keeping the apartment building working, including the cranky elevator which hasn't seen proper maintenance in years. There are some universal posts about being a parent.

What's missing, though, is editorial comment. The blog is well written but it is still a blog. Printing a blog in book format doesn't automatically make it a book. Some extra commentary to bring in the big picture, either as side bars or footnotes, would have make this an extraordinary book. As it stands, it's a collection of blog posts made under usual circumstances, that taken out of that context, read not all that different from any other blog. ( )
  pussreboots | Jan 16, 2015 |
This book I received from NetGalley. I was immediately attracted to it when I saw it when I just came back from a holiday in Cuba. A book about the real life there. Most likely something completely different from what I had seen as a tourist. My premise was true, a tourist doesn't see the real Cuba.

This book contains the post of the author's blog between 2006 and 2010. This makes it a quite slow read, as you normally don't read a blog from beginning to end. Some things seem to be double. That annoys when you read about a year in a week. It won't when you follow the blog. So that's what I did in the end, follow her blog at http://www.desdecuba.com/generationy/

The book shows the struggle live is on Cuba and the way people aren't free to say what they think. The book is very touching and I'm happy I read about this side of this mysterious island.

http://boekenwijs.blogspot.com/2011/09/havana-real.html ( )
  boekenwijs | Sep 11, 2011 |
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"Yoani Sanchez is an unusual dissident: no street protests, no attacks on big politicos, no calls for revolution. Rather, she produces a simple diary about what it means to live under the Castro regime in Cuba: the difficulty of shopping and chronic hunger; the art of repairing ancient appliances; the struggle for real news and the burdens of reading the party newspaper; the fear of admission to hospitals that lack the supplies for basic sterilization; and a life structured by a propaganda machine that pushes deep into the media, the public square, and the schools. Each sensitive dispatch is a brutal and honest depiction of Cuban life today. For these simple acts of truth telling--which are published online at Generation Y, and collected here in English for the first time--Sanchez is treated as a domestic radical: she is summoned by the police; her friends are threatened; she was recently kidnapped and beaten. The state newspaper has gone so far to call her "a spy in the pay of capitalism." Her ultimate concern, however, is for her friends in prison, and for the many who have fled, and for all those who have ceased to believe in the future of Cuba. Here the situation is elegantly expressed from the perspective of important and compelling new voice, one that has already found a worldwide audience online"--… (more)

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