The Boy Who Said No: An Escape to Freedom

The Boy Who Said No: An Escape to Freedom

4.6 15
by Patti Sheehy

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As a boy Frank Mederos' grandfather teaches him to fish, to navigate the seas, and to think for himself, much needed skills under the new Castro regime.  See more details below


As a boy Frank Mederos' grandfather teaches him to fish, to navigate the seas, and to think for himself, much needed skills under the new Castro regime.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Young Frank Mederos is not sure how to react when Cuba's dictator Batista is overthrown by Fidel Castro and his revolutionaries. In the years that follow, Frank is given unrequested, unwanted assignments by the Communist regime; Frank becomes increasingly disenchanted by the increasingly doctrinaire Cuban government intervening in nearly every aspect of Cuban life without regard for the desires or needs of individuals. When Frank's one true love Magda and her family flee Cuba for the safety, Frank resolves to follow them but escape from a regime determined to keep its people imprisoned will prove to be difficult and dangerous. Based on a real person, Mederos's actual story contains all the elements for a riveting tale of escape from an oppressive, regimented society, but Sheehy's execution never fully meets its potential. The story is flattened by an overly simple plot, leaving readers longing for the richness that evokes thrill. (June)
From the Publisher
The Boy Who Said No is a beautifully written story of love, friendship and adventure. The descriptions of Cuban life under Fidel Castro, as seen through the eyes of a maturing young man, are vivid and paint a clear picture of the beauty of the country, and the desperation of her people. The drama of the challenges Frank Mederos faced in his attempts to escape Cuba resonates with an underlying theme of human experience that transcends culture, country and politics. Patti Sheehy captures the passion and spirit of the times and brings it to life. — —Jonathan L. Lewis, author of I Thought We Were Happy

The Boy Who Said No will grab you by the lapels and won't let you go until you finish the last sentence. Your pulse will race as Frank Mederos battles to escape Cuba — amid treachery, suspicion and suspense. Bravo Patti Sheehy! — —Todd Buchholz, author of The Castro Gene

In The Boy Who Said No Frank Mederos exhibits uncommon courage in making his way to freedom. Against great odds he manages an escape worthy of the best fictional hero, only he pulled it off in real life! In telling the story, Patti Sheehy keeps the reader on chair's, rooting for him all the way. — —M Ann Jacoby, author, Life After Genius

Library Journal
This debut novel is the fictionalized story of Frank Medero's thrilling real-life escape from Castro's Cuba (with some names changed to protect those still in the country). Medero is a young boy when Castro comes to power but soon realizes that life has become ever more oppressive and dangerous as a criminal dictatorship under Bautista is replaced by a political one led by Castro. In part to gain freedom and in part to follow the girl he worships, Medero plots to escape. But now that he is in the army, fleeing his island nation is even more dangerous. VERDICT This mix of thriller and history offers a fascinating but depressing look at life under Castro's totalitarian regime. Even though the chase Sheehy describes is exciting, the suspense is lessened by Medero's success (as he is the novel's narrator). Despite that minor flaw, this is a tense and exhilarating read.—Robert Conroy, Warren, MI

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Product Details

Oceanview Publishing
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
6.40(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.10(d)

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The Boy Who Said No: An Escape to Freedom 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 15 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is an unbillable book with a true story that should and must be read by everyone. I had the HONOR of meeting Mr. Frank Mederos,the hero of the story, a very handsome and determine man, He came to our Book Club and everybody felt in love with him. without a drought He's an inspiration to all of us. We cannot wait for the sequel
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a true life story about Frank Mederos living in CUBA in the late 50's and falling in love with his childhood sweetheart Magda. He watches his beautiful country fall apart under Fidel Castro, is forced to join the Cuban Army and longs to eventually escape to the USA and FREEDOM. A thriving country under the leadership of San Juan Batista, Cuba changes when Fidel Castro comes to power. Cuba was once rich with industry and tourism, Castro closed the doors to outsiders. Private enterprise was no longer allowed.Instead everything became the property of the Cuban State and individuals lost the right to own property and business. Unemployment was high and goods were scarce because of US Embargo. The country was thrown into poverty. As a young man Frank Mederos was forced to serve in the Cuban Army. He quickly rose to the position of Anti-Tank Guided Missile Operator and was privy to many top intelligence information. When his love, Magda and her family, left Cuba for the United States, Frank was devastated. Missing Magda, and longing for freedom. Frank decided to desert from the army and escape to the United States. Because of his knowledge of army secrets the Cuban Army is relentless in trying to stop him. This book tells the harrowing story of Franks attempt to escape and the people around him. It's a riveting story that gives you a look into what life in Cuba became under Castro's rule. It's a story of a country that Christopher Columbus called "The most beautiful land that human eyes had ever seen". I would recommend this true life novel and am looking forward to her next effort!
Love2ReadLM More than 1 year ago
Being a Cuban immigrant myself, I always wanted to know what it was like for those Cubans that tried to escape by boat in the dead of night. This book is a compelling example of how those poor Cubans are literally dying to escape the terrible Castro regime and what the go thru for freedom. Well written
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Lil-Mae More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book immensely and would recommend it to all my friends. The subject gives us some incite about that mysterious place known as Cuba. The people of my age group remember many scary moments with that country A very good historical rendition.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
mgentile More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. Patti Sheehy chooses just the right words to tell the story of young Frankie Mederos. I loved reading a personal account of what Cuba was to this boy and what Cuba changed into because of Castro and Communism. I cannot wait for the next book!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a must read. very inspiring and gives us all hope. This fascinating story was read by my blook club. The author Patti Sheehy and Frank Mederos attened. What a delight. They will attend your book club too if you are local. Check it out! Liza
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Had the pleasure of meeting Patti Sheehy and Frank Mederos at our book club. This was a great book.A must read. Learned so much history through the eyes of a young boy. Patti's writing made me feel every emotion that Frank must have been feeling. Left me wanting more. Can't wait for the next book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The story of Frank is inspirational as it is exciting, sad and unpredictable.  The challenge of possibly moving to a new country and not knowing what will happen, especially leaving a home country that could follow you everywhere, makes this an immigrant's life story.   It's not just about how Frank creates a new life, it's about how politics, love and the unknown meet, and realize a sequence of events we can only dream of.   I really liked the flow of the book overall, it's easy, great story and you won't want to put it down.  I finished the book a big Frank Mederos fan, you probably will too.  
EHD More than 1 year ago
I can't remember the last time I stayed up to the wee hours of the morning to finish a book--I could NOT put this one down and would not have been able to sleep until I knew what had happened to Frank Mederos. The writing is smooth; the narration is beyond compare; the descriptions blend seamlessly with the story and truly paint a picture for the reader; and the characterization is, well, out of this world--I want to meet the real-life Frank. The story is so absolutely compelling, inspirational, and AMAZING that I almost wept that it was coming to an end---only to be eternally relieved to find that another book should be forthcoming. There are only a small handful of novels that I feel I can "recommend" without reserve, and I am now overjoyed to add this book to the list. I can not WAIT for "Stalked" to be written and released. :)
dhaupt More than 1 year ago
Frank Mederos was just a boy when the Batista reign ended and Fidel Castro took control of Cuba. He learned at the knee of his grandfather and his father and mother what was right and wrong and he could see with his own eyes and by his own experiences what was happening to his country and his people was not a good thing. He was a solider in Castro’s army as a young man without many choices until it became clear that there was only one clear choice to make. In a time when dissenting Cubans were disappearing at an alarming rate he along with the family of his beloved made the only decision they thought they could. Escape. Ms. Sheehy brings us a true life adventure of one man’s journey to freedom. She takes us through his very personal experiences, his feelings, his gains and his losses. Her narrative style is diary-esque yet with an on the edge of your seat thriller novel feeling that gives the reader the feeling of being there on the front lines with Frank, his friends and his loved ones. She tells it in words that anyone at any age can understand and appreciate and she gives us a hint at the end that this is just the beginning. Patti thank you for a wonderful, eye-opening look behind the Cuban curtain I can’t wait to see where you take us next. Brava on a great debut!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago