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I was unaware of the hardships many families were subjected to living in Castro's Cuba I truly enjoyed reading this book and even had tears in my eyes especially when reading the last few chapters Thank you for letting us into your life and sharing your family's story. WAITING ON ZAPOTE STREETGENRE: Fiction based on true events.I spent the first twelve years of my life in communist Cuba, so I'm very familiar with what life was like living in Fidel's Utopia I left Cuba in 1970 on a USsponsored Freedom Flight The author chose to write the book as a book of fiction I know what life was like in the 1960s and Cuba’s path to utter destruction (thanks to Fidel) in the decades to come Life became hell I wanted to read this book because I wanted to learnabout the Mariel Boatlift experience I had heard personal accounts from family friends who were lucky to leave Cuba during the lift, and this book confirmed their stories In 1980 Fidel Castro allowed approximately 125,000 Cubans to leave the island via what came to be known as the Mariel Boatlift Castro didn't make it easy, of course He would show his brutality until the last boat left In the 1960s, Castro would show the Civil Rights struggle in the US on television, ferocious dogs thrown at black Americans He had no problem doing the same thing to the men, women, and children waiting in the departure camp El Mosquito Those of us who left Cuba on the Freedom Flights, looked out the plane window to see our homeland onetime Those who left on the fishing boats during the Mariel Boatlift, looked back to see Cuba onetime, their eyes fixed on the coast until the lights disappeared All of us then looked ahead, wondering what the future would bring Our parents were forever brokenhearted Dania R Nasca, authorLights Out: A Cuban Memoir of Betrayal and Survival Great story, easy reading, very enlightening A very good friend of mine recently completed this memoirstyle book about her and her family’s life which I found to be an incredible and insightful story about life in Cuba My friend’s name is Betty Viamontes and she is a Tampa resident who has lived in the area for approximately 35 years Betty and her mother, sister and brother arrived to Florida together during the Mariel boatlift emigration on April 28, 1980 Much of the book is about what happened to her family in the years before this very impactful day (this April marks the 35th anniversary of the Mariel boatlifts).The majority of the book is based on Betty’s memories of life in Cuba as well as her mother’s journals that her mom kept over the years The journals that Betty’s mom had written were kept in an old suitcase by her mom and were found by Betty and her siblings on the day their mother passed away, along with letters and notes to family members The book was initially started after her Mom’s cancer diagnosis about 10 years before her mom passed away After Betty lost her mom, it was too difficult to continue writing, but after the needed time to heal, she again was inspired, especially after she was able to read the journals which she had not been able to touch for about two years Betty recently finished the book at the end of February and the reviews since completion have been nothing short of excellent In addition, with today’s changing political relationship with Cuba, the book is a great read for those who have curiosity about Cuban life and culture or for those who one day would like to visit Cuba. I too came from a communist country of China when I was 16 Unlike the characters in the book, I was fortunate enough to have both of my parents' love and support After reading this book, it really made me appreciate the normal things we take for granted, from a can of soda, ability to buy food we want from a store, to not have to be limited by food rationing (I remember this from childhood), freedom of expression, religion, and a simple telephone call I will think twice before I complain about any first world problems, such as when the restaurant food isn't to my expectation or why my Apple Facetime picture quality is not 1080P perfect! The main female character's love, courage, dedication and selfless sacrifice for her children and family future and freedom is a true amazing tale of the American Dream. I thought this was a very interesting read The love story was heartfelt, butso, it is a very clear depiction of the struggles of the Cuban people having gone through such cruel separation of loved ones and the story of those who stayed behind in Havana In my opinion, Havana, the city itself, was this most critical character of the story going from what was a beautiful and thriving city to a stagnant and forgotten jewel Laura's story parallels so much with the actual city of Havana She is a young beautiful and happy woman, who endures the many years of suffering and struggle under Fidel's communism She slowly transforms into the aging woman who is consumed with hardship and survival Yet she is able to keep her inner beauty protected like a treasure in hopes that she will someday reunite with her husband In same way that the city of Havana has its beauty hidden like a treasure behind the years superficial decay It is a beautiful city waiting for that moment of freedom and reunification with its people This is a great story I now feel like know so muchof the history of Cuba and that of its people without having yet visited the island. Betty Viamontes writes with such clarity and skill Absolutely loved this story It is heartbreaking to watch her struggle with life in Cuba, and away from her husband Loved their determination This book is a first person account of what life was like after Castro overtook the country Took away their land, their businesses, their freedom It is heartbreaking to learn about the true pain that was caused, and evenso to know that it even continues all these many years later Just horrible to think entire lives are wasted in such bad conditions Wonderful, wonderful ending; you just wanted to cheer for them! This is a treasure of a story, and it will be one of those books I keep forever Thank you, Betty Viamontes! *Download ⇱ Waiting on Zapote Street: Love and Loss in Castro's Cuba ⇨ This book is based on a true story It is a highlyrated novel that marked the introduction to the literary world of its independent author, Betty Viamontes, and continues to expand its international reach Rio and Laura, two people from opposite backgrounds, meet in Havana, Cuba in January,A single, unselfish decision to help a stranger shatters their lives The revolution they unwittingly helped solidify creates a powerful and myopic socialist government that tears them apart Neither one of them is prepared to face the rollercoaster ride their lives become Neither one of them could have imagined how much their love for each other would be tested, or for how long, or the impact their choices would have on their families Also check the author's second book: Candela's Secrets and Other Havana Stories, an anthology of vivid and engaging stories that is captivating readers in the United States and abroad Paul Graham Betty Viamontes de Interrogationibus Obliquis Apud Ciceronem Observationes Selectae and continues to expand its international reach Rio and Laura A Trip to the Zoo two people from opposite backgrounds Las mejores anécdotas del Barça (Deportes) meet in Havana To Love Again (Bound Hearts Cuba in January,A single All He Needed unselfish decision to help a stranger shatters their lives The revolution they unwittingly helped solidify creates a powerful and myopic socialist government that tears them apart Neither one of them is prepared to face the rollercoaster ride their lives become Neither one of them could have imagined how much their love for each other would be tested A Christmas to Remember or for how long Step In or the impact their choices would have on their families Also check the author's second book: Candela's Secrets and Other Havana Stories The Amazing Hairstyles Book an anthology of vivid and engaging stories that is captivating readers in the United States and abroad When hopes and dreams are dashed, only character and courage will see this desperate family through Set in the early days of Castro’s Cuba, we get a fresh perspective and new insight into this tumultuous time A remarkable story of strength, determination, and the power of love Historical fiction with a strong tie to current events. I enjoy reading history This book not only details the story of a family separated by politics, but if takes readers through various historical periods, including the day that Castro came to power The author did an excellent job placing readers on the street of Havana Excellent read!