Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from July, 2016

CUBA WEEK! FUN FACTS ABOUT CUBA

Cuba.  The name alone conjures up images of beautiful women, dashing men, smoldering cigars and savory dishes.   All true, and luckily Cuba is no longer forbidden territory.  More than 10 major airlines have direct flights to Cuba,  and there is even a brand new US-owned hotel on the island. 
Havana is once again open for business.
To Celebrate Cuba, The Latina Book Club has put together some fun facts.  How many do you know?###



FUN FACTS ABOUT CUBA
Cuba is 90 miles from Miami.It’s the largest island in the Caribbean.Fidel Castro took over the country in 1959.Baseball is the most popular sport in Cuba and yet by National Decree 83a, passed in 1962, professional sports are illegal.As of 2013, Cuba has nine sites on the UNESCO World Heritage List.The Manjuari fish can only be found in Cuba.Ernest Hemingway wrote THE OLD MAN & THE SEA and FOR WHOM THE BELL TOLLS while living in Cuba.There is a John Lennon Park in Cuba, complete with statue.Cuba has over 200 bays and 250 beaches to explor…

CUBA WEEK! THE MARES OF LENIN PARK BY AGUSTIN D. MARTINEZ

The Latina Book Club continues its Celebration of Cuba. Here’s a young adult novel about a teen hero struggling to reconcile the two faces of his native land.


SUMMARY:  Winner of Prize Americana, THE MARES OF LENIN PARK is the story of Uli, a fourteen-year-old Cuban boy, who struggles to reconcile his deceased father's heroic past with his mother Graciela's new marriage. Finding it more and more difficult to live in the economic times of Cuba following the fall of the Soviet Union, Uli learns that the Revolutionaries are closer than expected - dealing drugs to support the failing economy. These discoveries catapult him into a journey involving work camps, murder, and a voyage at sea.♥


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:  Agustin was born in Panama after his parents fled Cuba in the early ’60s. He grew up in Miami and currently lives in the Washington, DC metro area. Agustin’s short fiction has appeared inArcadia Literary Journal, The Binnacle, The 34th Parallel Magazine, The Write Room, Apropos Li…

CUBA WEEK! FAMOUS CUBANOS

The Latina Book Club continues its Celebration of Cuba with a list of Famous Cuban Americans.  We were surprised at how many we could name off the top of our heads, and equally surprised by those we didn’t.  There are actors, fashion designers, sports figures, politicians and many more.  How many of these Famous Cubanos do you know?


FAMOUS CUBANOS

1.1.   Desi Arnaz – actor, producer, singer, band leader
2.Jeff Bezos – founder of Amazon and owner of the Washington Post
3.Richard Blanco – inaugural poet
4.Jose Canseco – Major League Baseball player
5.Celia Cruz – actress and multiple Grammy winning singer
6.Ted Cruz – Texas Senator who had his eyes on the White House
7.Sammy Davis Jr. – actor, singer
8.Rosario Dawson – Hollywood starlet
9.René Echevarria – writer for Star Trek: The Next Generation and co-creator of The 4400
10.Gloria Estefan – seven time Grammy winning and Academy Award nominated singer and Broadway producer
11.Oscar Hijuelos – author best known for his book THE MAMBO KINGS PLAY SO…

CUBA WEEK! 20 BOOKS EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW FROM CUBAN AMERICAN WRITERS

The Latina Book Club is Celebrating Cuba this week.
Check out these books from Cuban American writers and / or with Cuban American protagonists.  There is a book for everyone from fiction to biographies to children’s books to romance to young adult. Note this list is by no means complete, but it will get you started.  Happy Reading!


BOOKS BY CUBAN AMERICAN WRITERS

1.A CUP OF WATER UNDER MY BED by Daisy Hernández (Beacon Press) 2.BURN BABY BURN by Meg Medina (Candlewick) 3.CUBA IN SPLINTERS: 11 STORIES FROM A NEW CUBA edited by Orlando Luis Pardo Lazo (OR Books) 4.CUBAN-AMERICAN, DANCING ON THE HYPHEN by Amarilys Gacio Rassler (SPS Publications) 5.DALIA’S WONDROUS HAIR by Laura Lacámara (Piňata Books/ Arte Publico Press) 6.EVERYONE LEAVES by Wendy Guerra (Amazon Crossing) 7.HOW TO LEAVE HIALEAH by Jennine Capó Crucet (St. Martin’s Press) 8.LA BELLE CREOLE by Alina Garcia-Lapuerta (Chicago Review Press) 9.LETTERS FROM HEAVEN by Lydia Gil (Piňata Books/ Arte Publico Press)

BOOK OF THE MONTH: THE SKINNY YEARS BY RAUL RAMOS Y SANCHEZ (AND FREE CUBAN RECIPE BOOK!)

The Latina Book Club congratulates Raul Ramos y Sanchez on his new book, THE SKINNY YEARS. 
We also thank him for the free e-book with many recipes from the book.  Do let us know your favorite.  

In celebration of Raul's new book, we are Celebrating Cuba all week long. Happy Cooking and Happy Reading!

Hard times come to everybody, Victor. Life is what you make of it,  not what happens to you…Don’t let the comemierdas change you. – Abuela Perez


Colorful. Emotional. Outstanding.
THE SKINNY YEARS can take its place proudly alongside other notable coming-of-age tales like BLESS ME, ULTIMA by Rudolfo Anaya; WHEN I WAS PUERTO RICAN by Esmeralda Santiago; and ARISTOTLE AND DANTE DISCOVER THE SECRETS OF THE UNIVERSE by Benjamin Alire Sáenz.
THE SKINNY YEARS deals with lots of complex issues like identity, loss, belonging and connection. Through our teen hero Victor “Skinny” Delgado,” Ramos y Sanchez gives life and light to the “kaleidoscope of color, culture and creed” that was Miami in the turbu…