Lives don't get much more passionately driven than that of the Nicaraguan revolutionary Gioconda Belli. She was educated by nuns and lived a life of privilege as a child and well-heeled society girl until she made the choice to join the Sandinistas in her twenties to serve and then lead in their underground resistance. If part of her wanted to fulfil society's classic code of femininity and produce four children (which she did), there was also part that wanted the privileges of men - the freedom to carry out clandestine operations, to forge the Sandinista resistance effort even with toddler and infant in tow. 'Conspiracy came easy to me,' confesses Belli. She hid political pamphlets from her first husband as she hid her love affairs with remarkable men. From Nicaragua to Cuba where she locked horns with Castro, to exile in Costa Rica where she organized an underground network, back to a triumphant if shortlived Sandinista government where she was in charge of State television, Gioconda Belli's life crackles on the page. THE COUNTRY UNDER MY SKIN is a unique blend of real-life intrigue - political and romantic - and hard-won wisdom.