Thursday, December 6

Audiobook Review: Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton

Next Year in HavanaAuthor: Chanel Cleeton 
Narrator: Kyla Garcia, Frankie Maria Corzo
Title: Next Year in Havana
Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance
Pages: Audiobook
Published:  02-06-18
Where I Got It: My shelf (Audible)

After the death of her beloved grandmother, a Cuban-American woman travels to Havana, where she discovers the roots of her identity--and unearths a family secret hidden since the revolution...

Havana, 1958. The daughter of a sugar baron, nineteen-year-old Elisa Perez is part of Cuba's high society, where she is largely sheltered from the country's growing political unrest--until she embarks on a clandestine affair with a passionate revolutionary...

Miami, 2017. Freelance writer Marisol Ferrera grew up hearing romantic stories of Cuba from her late grandmother Elisa, who was forced to flee with her family during the revolution. Elisa's last wish was for Marisol to scatter her ashes in the country of her birth. 

Arriving in Havana, Marisol comes face-to-face with the contrast of Cuba's tropical, timeless beauty and its perilous political climate. When more family history comes to light and Marisol finds herself attracted to a man with secrets of his own, she'll need the lessons of her grandmother's past to help her understand the true meaning of courage. 

I've had this on my list for so long to read! However, I decided to listen to the audiobook since I get one free a month. My patience is limited you see ;)

The story follows Marisol and Elisa. Marisol lives in 2017 and is going to Cuba to lay her grandma's ashes to rest. Along the way she gets to meet some people from her grandma's past who was not able or did not flee in the 50s after the revolution. We also get to Marisol's grandma, Elisa, as a young woman in the 50s before, during, and after the revolution that changed her way of life. 

I did like Elisa's POV better. I didn't mind the back and forth, but I think I would've prefered just Elisa's. Marisol wasn't bad, but it was pretty predictable and I didn't really care much for her romance with Luis. There was one twist that I didn't see coming so that was exciting.

It was honestly interesting to see the revolution's impact on Cuba and its people through the eyes of these two characters. In all honesty, I do not know much about Cuban history only the little bit that we learned. We really didn't discuss the cultural and personal impact it had on its people. It was pretty glossed over. I'm not surprised by what I read. Bloody revolutions tend to led to very bloody results. It's sad and do people not learn from history? It's really sad when the country turns on their own people and break all the promises they fought for. Sad. 

But yes, it was an interesting journey to listen to. I didn't cry though! I do not think I loved it as much as everyone else. 

I'm honestly glad I listened to the audio. I feel like I wouldn't have enjoyed this AS much as I did. The writing was good, but there were a lot of slow parts and lots of repetition of thoughts and ideas by our characters. I get it. We get it. Move forward. Slowly things down here. That is something you will see when you get 1st person POVs. 

The narrators did a good job. They fit the characters even though I had zero idea it was two different people. LOL. They sounded so similar that I was shocked when I seen it was two different people!!

Overall, I did enjoy this book. I do not think I enjoyed it nearly as much as some people, but it was a good one and I recommend it. Lots to learn and see and feel. The narrators did well even though I had no idea they were different people. My only real, big complaint is the fact that there was a lot of repetitions of thoughts and seemed to bog some areas down. I'll stamp this with 3 stars. 


Blodeuedd said...

I could read, listen to it. Sure :)

Carole Rae said...

This would've been a good one to discuss.

Melliane said...

I heard good things about this one but too bad it wasn't just a little more

Sophia Rose said...

I preferred the historical plot line, too. I did enjoy it more, I think. I learned so much about Cuban history and culture. I definitely want her feisty, secretive aunties' story next spring. Yay for the audio being a good bet.

Carole Rae said...

Melliane, I do wish for more

Sophia, oooo I do want the aunt's story.

vvb32 reads said...

I couldn't get into this one when I started it so it ended up in my DNF pile. Cover is pretty though.

Carole Rae said...

vvb32, super bummer!

Anachronist said...

Well, maybe.

Carole Rae said...

I wouldn't run to find it. loll