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Cuba, I Remember You/ Cuba, Te Recuerdo

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More About This Book

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781594539558
  • Publisher: Airleaf Publishing & Bookselling
  • Publication date: 2/28/2006
  • Edition description: Bilingual
  • Pages: 373
  • Product dimensions: 5.04 (w) x 8.02 (h) x 0.79 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 6 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 18, 2006

    A delightful and Informative read!,,

    If you want to find the truth of the every day family life in Cuba, then, you really need to read this book. It is written in a very fresh, easy-to read way that you will enjoy all through. It will make you laugh, cry, and cheer. You'll be impressed all at the same time. Being different with the majority of the books you will find about the island, this is not touristy nor political but it shows you both of those aspects as they directly affect the family of little Oscar Ramirez, which is the love between a little boy (the writer) and his Cuban family members. The stories are so real, that you will fell what he feels when describing his love of a memory, a memory of home. I recommend it to all people who have fond memories of family and home.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 28, 2006

    An eye-witness look at pre/post-revolution Cuba

    Recently Cuban dictator Fidel Castro temporarily handed power over to his brother, Raul, while he underwent surgery and recuperation from intestinal problems. As the news media reviews the legacy and rule of Fidel Castro, now would be a good time to look a that legacy from the point-of-view of one who lived in Cuba pre- and post-revolution. Oscar Ramírez-Orbea is one who grew up pre-revolution and saw all that his family work hard for be taken by the Communists under Castro. As the title suggests, this book is bi-lingual, written by a professor who actually was born and raised in Cuba and fled Cuba as a boy with his family. The Ramírez-Orbea family lost all they had worked for when Castro seized private property 'for the common good.' The author also includes illustrations of the homes he lived in as well as photographs. The Ramírez-Orbea family trees are also illustrated. Ramírez-Orbea's dislike of the Castro regime is not hidden. There is nothing about Communism that has a redeeming value in his eyes. After seeing all that his family worked so hard to build up being taken away 'for the common good,' you can't blame his views on the subject. Ramírez-Orbea also hopes that the book becomes a movie. It could be a good movie along the lines of A Christmas Story (based on In God We Trust--All Others Pay Cash by Jean Shepherd). It is not a straight narrative of his life as the author tells us about his family or the homes he lived in or the schools he attended. The period between Castro's takeover of Cuba and the family's flight to the United States was dramatic. The family had to move to a smaller home and the author was sent to a Catholic school (even though his mother taught in the public schools--and had an underground business as a tutor). His final day at the Salesian school St John Bosco was marked by rampaging 'revolutionaries' breaking through the fence and taking over the school. Imagine fearing for your life at school? Most clergy left Cuba shortly after this. The family had decided to leave Cuba and applied for exit papers. Of course they became unemployable, people marked as 'unpatriotic.' For several years (when they did get permission to go to the US) the family couldn't get any official jobs and were unemployed and unemployable. Ramírez-Orbea highlights the irony that even as the government reported no unemployment his parents were unemployed--and were considered 'unemployable.' It was then that the family found ways to support itself, such as baking cakes to sell, the mother tutoring in her home, and other odd jobs. This book is a must-read for anyone interested in Cuban history, in the realities of Communism, and in the indomitable human spirit. Being bilingual, the book can be used as an aid in teaching a second language (Spanish to the English speaker or English to the Spanish speaker). Granted most instructors won't want the book's handy 'jimmy' structure, but for myself I am able to try to learn Spanish on my own. The author also has an appendix for instructors wishing to use this book in the classroom. Check it out! The author has some pointed barbs about Communism. Usually it's of an ironic sort, such as his unemployed, unemployable parents in a land with no unemployment. There is the reminiscence of the trenches dug for missiles which were never finished. The author states: 'Given this Communist efficiency, thank God the Americans never attacked us!' Of course the trenches filled with water and became prime breeding areas for mosquitoes, which may have spread malaria. The Communist government did nothing about the mosquitoes or the malaria (so much for the vaunted health care system). The book has three major sections. 'From the Old House/Desde la casa vieja' focuses on the author's life and home before the Castro revolution. 'From the New House/Desde la casa nueva' details post-revolutionary life and the home the author's family moved to after the revolution until the

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 3, 2006

    A delightful and Informative read!

    If you want to find the truth of the every day family life in Cuba, then, you really need to read this book. It is written in a very fresh, easy-to read way that you will enjoy all through. It will make you laugh, cry, and cheer. You'll be impressed all at the same time. Being different with the majority of the books you will find about the island, this is not touristy nor political but it shows you both of those aspects as they directly affect the family of little Oscar Ramirez, which is the love between a little boy (the writer) and his Cuban family members. The stories are so real, that you will fell what he feels when describing his love of a memory, a memory of home. I recommend it to all people who have fond memories of family and home.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2006

    Cuba, I Remember You/ Cuba, TE Recuerdo

    I laughed and cried, it has everything you look for a heart warming stroll down memory lane.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2006

    Cuba, I Remember You/ Cuba, TE Recuerdo

    The powerful and lasting thing about this book is the impact of his of childhood on himself and above all of the life he led with his family in Cuba before and after the revolution, and his extraordinary literary ability. Throughout, I am skeptical about Ramirez's Cuban 'essence,' I am utterly persuaded, on the basis of this book, that Ramirez has the makings of a first-rate novelist. He indicates in the book that this is a memoir and not a work of fiction, and it was drived out of love. And yet, the detail and the engaging observations he draws one into, is the stuff of first rate Novelist.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2006

    Cuba, I Remember You/ Cuba, TE Recuerdo

    What is effective about this book is that it finally opens the door to this virtually taboo observation of Cuba on the family level, by being treated as infallible and unquestionable, recount of a good life one family had had and lost, all by the act of one man. Dr. Ramirez remembers his family with fond memories and tells the world of a family that was no different than yours or mine. I found that this book encourages the individuality of the cuba people to speak of the good and the bad things that happened in Cuba before and after the revolution and this books goes to show how much closer we have come. Filled with more thought-provoking questions than you will ever find, it will leave you want to know more. I found this book to be a wonderful conversation-starter to practice my Spanish. ALthough, I was born in the US I do have Cuban family members and it was a chance to see a part of their life I was never privy too. It has encourged me to learn more than just 'facts and dates' about my realitives from the family. So Thanks for the encouragement to start my own look into family memories. Vic

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