Next Year In Havana by Chanel Cleeton | Book Review

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.

Next Year In Havana by Chanel Cleeton | Book ReviewNext Year in Havana by Chanel Cleeton
Published by Penguin on 2018
Genres: Fiction, Romance, General, Fiction, Contemporary Women, Cultural Heritage, Hispanic & Latino
Pages: 400
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
Buy on Amazon
ISBN: 9780399586682

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.

Next Year In Havana by Chanel Cleeton surprised me with how excellent it was. I did not know anything about the Cuban revolution going in. All I had to go on was some bloggers talking about how enjoyable it was via twitter. In addition, there’s the gorgeous cover which is the easiest way to get me to read a book. It was so hard to set down, once I started reading book. Cliche as that sounds, Cleeton’s writing pulled me in and would not let go.

Cleeton’s Next Year In Havana follows a dual timeline. One timeline is set in present day. Marisol is the point of view character. She is visiting Cuba now that Castro has passed. Marisol has her grandmother Elisa’s ashes in tow and is looking for the perfect place to scatter them. The other storyline follows Elisa. Elisa’s story takes place at the height of the Cuban revolution. Her wealthy sugar baron family is affected by the Revolution. Also, she’s fallen in love with exactly the wrong person.

Elisa grows up with all the trappings of wealth. She is one among several siblings. Actually, she is basically one of the middle children. Anyways, one day Elisa goes to a party with her sisters. Elisa meets a revolutionary named Pablo at the party and falls in love. From there, she questions a lot of things.Unfortunately, Castro is closing in on Havana and Elisa’s life is about to change. She’s so incredibly brave, however.

As for Marisol, Elisa’s granddaughter, she is excited to visit Havana. She was essentially raised by Elisa, because Marisol’s parents are trash. The United States travel ban ended, however. Marisol is among the first tourists. She is there ostensibly to write a travel article. Still, Marisol ends up falling for a professor. His name is Luis. He is the grandson of her grandmother’s former best friend. Anyways, Marisol thinks the affair is innocent until she realizes that the Cuban government has their eyes on them. Meanwhile, Marisol is about to unravel a secret that Elisa had.

Next Year In Havana is a beautifully written book. In addition, Chanel Cleeton mastered writing a book where you learn and are entertained. I find myself really excited to read her next book which will star Beatriz, Elisa’s sister. Cleeton really captures Havana. Her storytelling made me want to go to Cuba but also not, because their government is kind of scary. This book is one I would absolutely say you need to read if you just want to be transported.

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About April (Books&Wine)

April is in her 30s and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and toddler, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.


  1. Sounds like an interesting read! Great review!

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