ARC Review: Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton

Posted February 6, 2018 by Francesca in Reviews / 22 Comments

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
ARC Review: Next Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton
Next Year in Havana
by Chanel Cleeton

5 Stars

BOOK INFO


Released: February 6 2018
Published by Berkley
Pages: 336
Format: eARC
 

Recommended Read!

“…the way Ms. Cleeton delivers this story is masterful.  It felt alive, intense, it had it’s own heartbeat…”
~ Under the Covers

When I first heard about this book, I was dying to read it.  First of all, I’ve always had a fascination with stories about Havana especially around the Revolution period.  Whether it’s movies or books, it just draws me in and I want to know more.  And honestly, if that beautiful cover doesn’t make you want to pick it up then I don’t know what else can.

From the moment I cracked it open one thing was clear.  This was going to be an emotional ride.  NEXT YEAR IN HAVANA is a heartbreaking tale of love and loss, closure and new beginnings.  About sacrifice and pride.  And in the midst of that it also gives us a genuine glimpse into real life events from a perspective that is not often what we hear about from history books.

Marisol Ferrera is a young Cuban-American who travels to Cuba after her grandmother’s death to spread her ashes.  Her grandmother’s last wish was that of returning to the homeland she was ripped away from without a choice when she was a young woman.  In that process, Marisol gets to connect with a country and roots that she only ever heard of through stories.  But aside from trying to find herself and where she belongs through the streets of 2017 Havana she also learns who her grandmother really was.  That young woman that her grandmother had to leave behind all those years ago.

This story is narrated in dual POVs and two time periods.  Marisol, the granddaughter in 2017 and Elisa Perez back in 1958-1959.  Both stories had me riveted to the pages.  Both stories heartbreaking for different reasons.  And also both so intertwined and connected.  It would’ve been easy to connect more with one than the other but the way Ms. Cleeton delivers this story is masterful.  It felt alive, intense, it had it’s own heartbeat and I was enthralled with it.  Truly riveting and unputdownable.  I didn’t want this story to end while at the same time I needed to get to the end and find out what happened.

While both time periods feature a romance, there’s something about Elisa’s love story that gutted me.  The love was deep and real, the sacrifices were immeasurable.  While Marisol’s romance is nowhere near that and the ending to their love story was probably an easy out, I was still happy with it.  But this is about so much more than the romance to me.  The picture it vividly painted about Cuba then and now was touching and thought-provoking.  Fair warning… this is most definitely an ugly cry book.

I don’t think I can recommend this book enough.  It’s by far my favorite book by this author and I’m so excited that she’ll be releasing another book set in this world and this time give us the story about another one of the Perez sisters.  I’m already impatiently waiting.

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About Chanel Cleeton

Originally from Florida, Chanel Cleeton grew up on stories of her family's exodus from Cuba following the events of the Cuban Revolution. Her passion for politics and history continued during her years spent studying in England where she earned a bachelor's degree in International Relations from Richmond, The American International University in London and a master's degree in Global Politics from the London School of Economics & Political Science. Chanel also received her Juris Doctor from the University of South Carolina School of Law. She loves to travel and has lived in the Caribbean, Europe, and Asia.

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Francesca

Blogger/Reviewer at Under the Covers Book Blog
I’m a 30 something sun lover living in the Big Apple (read New York).I’m a book and coffee addict and lover of all things elephants.

I get easily distracted by pictures of sexy guys and have tons of book boyfriends.I keep all my alpha males chained to my basement and guard them fiercely.*Back off bitches*I like to see Jason Momoa as a lot of those boyfriends, because ….. mmmmmmm JASON.MOMOA!

I’m a part time graphic designer (yes, everything you see on UTC has been done by me), run my husband's business from home and on a good day I’m a self appointed superwoman (she who can do it all).I love blogging with my girls and I couldn’t do it any other way!My first love is everything paranormal, but in the past few years I’ve re-learned to love contemporary romance.Every once in a while I like to mix things up with a historical romance, a steampunk or an LGBT book.Because I need variety to avoid book slumps.I don’t always need an HEA although I prefer one, and I love authors that can rip my heart out and make me ugly cry.
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Sophia Rose
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Sophia Rose

I had such an emotional reaction to this book. She really made Cuba come alive for me. Can’t wait for Beatriz’s book.

Under the Covers Book Blog
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Under the Covers Book Blog

Yeah, it really gets you in the feels. 🙂 I’m dying for Beatriz as well!

Amy R
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Amy R

Thanks for the review.

Kathy Valentine
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Kathy Valentine

Fabulous review Francesca!! I can’t wait to read! Shared on all my socials!!

Under the Covers Book Blog
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Under the Covers Book Blog

Thanks Kathy, hope you enjoy it

Elizabeth
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Elizabeth

Wow! This looks amazing.

Under the Covers Book Blog
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Under the Covers Book Blog

It’s such a different read, hope you give it a chance.

Darynda
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Darynda

Oh wow, this sounds SO GOOD! Thanks for the review!

Under the Covers Book Blog
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Under the Covers Book Blog

I hope you give it a try!

Sophia Rose
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Sophia Rose

I had such an emotional reaction to this book. She really made Cuba come alive for me. Can’t wait for Beatriz’s book.

Under the Covers Book Blog
Admin
Under the Covers Book Blog

Yeah, it really gets you in the feels. 🙂 I’m dying for Beatriz as well!

Amy R
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Amy R

Thanks for the review.

Kathy Valentine
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Kathy Valentine

Fabulous review Francesca!! I can’t wait to read! Shared on all my socials!!

Under the Covers Book Blog
Admin
Under the Covers Book Blog

Thanks Kathy, hope you enjoy it

Elizabeth
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Elizabeth

Wow! This looks amazing.

Under the Covers Book Blog
Admin
Under the Covers Book Blog

It’s such a different read, hope you give it a chance.

Darynda
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Darynda

Oh wow, this sounds SO GOOD! Thanks for the review!

Under the Covers Book Blog
Admin
Under the Covers Book Blog

I hope you give it a try!

Timitra
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Timitra

This is on my wishlist. Thanks for sharing your thoughts Francesca

Bube
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Bube

Woot!
This sounds great!
Looking forward to read 🙂
Thank you for the wonderful review Francesca!

Timitra
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Timitra

This is on my wishlist. Thanks for sharing your thoughts Francesca

Bube
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Bube

Woot!
This sounds great!
Looking forward to read 🙂
Thank you for the wonderful review Francesca!