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Reviewed by Ruffina Oserio for Readers' Favorite
Among Friends: Travels in Cuba by Heather Murray is a personal account, a memoir, of one woman’s three journeys to Cuba. It is during the years following the Fidel Castro regime and the country is just waking up from political tyranny. Follow this woman as she unveils the beauty of Cuba, the psyche and soul of its people, the breathtaking places to visit, the culture, and what it feels like to walk alongside a people that has suffered one of the worst kinds of regimes. Follow the protagonist as she meets friends, listens to people share their thoughts about this beautiful country, and criticize the regime; follow her as she faces the challenges of a new culture and some of the most difficult realities of the country. This is a well-crafted account that tourists and travelers will consider an invaluable tool.
Heather Murray’s writing is very beautiful and she has an eye for detail without sacrificing the most important elements of her narrative. Her prose is laced with colorful descriptions and dialogues that readers will enjoy. The author has a unique way of weaving the different themes into the narrative — friendship, politics, travel, and culture — and readers will find themselves irresistibly hooked, thanks to the seductive narrative voice and captivating writing style. I also loved the way the other characters come across in the narrative — real and memorable — especially Julian, the teacher, Magdalena and her relentless critiques of the government, and the outgoing taxi driver. Apart from the entertainment one will get from Among Friends: Travels in Cuba, the book also offers excellent tips and advice that readers will need while traveling anywhere in Cuba. It was so good I couldn’t put down.