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This review is from: My Life (Paperback)
`My life' is Castro's autobiography as told in interview form with Ignacio Ramonet and it makes for fascinating reading. You get a question and answer format the whole way through, which actually makes for excellent flow and speedy reading. It is easy to read just one more question, and another and another.... You obviously get Castro's unique take on many aspects of his own and Cuban life and although at times he comes across as particularly angry and firey, generally you get a balanced take on his life events. He seems willing to acknowledge mistakes he's made, as well as inevitably highlighting his successes. It is interesting to get his side of the story on issues such as `Bay of Pigs', `The Cuban Missile Crisis' and the `Special Period' and you slowly realise that the propaganda fed to us in western countries may not be as true as we are led to believe. I read `The Cuban Reader' (an excellent book and highly recommended by the way) at the same time as this book and it made for a more rounded look at the overall picture. For example it is interesting to read Castro's take on homosexual persecution and then read an article in the aforementioned book that shows a similar or opposing view. It enabled me to read this book with a more critical eye and get more out of it. There are two colour photo sections in this book that show Castro at various stages in his life, from pre revolutionary up to aged world statesman. This book shows just how intelligent and charming Castro is, as well as leaving you impressed at his grasp on world history and current affairs. This is an extremely readable book and is immensely insightful and is worth looking at for all those interested in Cuba and Cuban life. As long as you are aware of the bias any autobiography engenders and are prepared to look a little deeper, this has so much to offer it would be remiss to not read it at some point.
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