Start reading Everyone Leaves on your Kindle in under a minute. Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here.

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Enter a promotion code
or gift card
 
 
 

Try it free

Sample the beginning of this book for free

Deliver to your Kindle or other device

Anybody can read Kindle books—even without a Kindle device—with the FREE Kindle app for smartphones, tablets and computers.
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Color:
Image not available

To view this video download Flash Player

 

Everyone Leaves [Kindle Edition]

Wendy Guerra , Achy Obejas
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $14.95
Kindle Price: $4.99
You Save: $9.96 (67%)
Borrow this book for free on a Kindle device with Amazon Prime. Learn more about Kindle Owners' Lending Library.
Join Prime to borrow this book at no cost.
The Kindle Owners' Lending Library gives you access to thousands of books, including New York Times bestsellers, to borrow and read for free.
  • Borrow a book as frequently as once per month
  • No due dates — keep books as long as you like and return them when it's time for something new
  • Read on any Amazon Kindle device

Amazon Prime members also enjoy:
  • Unlimited streaming of thousands of popular movies and TV shows with Prime Instant Video
  • FREE Two-Day Shipping on millions of items, with no minimum order size

For more information about the Kindle Owners' Lending Library visit our help page.

If you buy a new print edition of this book (or purchased one in the past), you can buy the Kindle edition for only $0.99 (Save 80%). Print edition purchase must be sold by Amazon. Learn more.

Whispersync for Voice

Now you can switch back and forth between reading the Kindle book and listening to the Audible audiobook. Learn more or scan your Kindle library to find matching professional narration for the Kindle books you already own.

Add the professional narration of Everyone Leaves for a reduced price of $1.99 after you buy this Kindle book.

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition $4.99  
Paperback $8.97  
MP3 CD, Audiobook, MP3 Audio, Unabridged $2.13  
Audible Audio Edition, Unabridged $11.95 or Free with Audible 30-day free trial
$1.99 Kindle Books for Mother's Day
Choose from over 50 Kindle books and find the perfect gift for Mother's Day. Learn More

Book Description

Nieve Guerra finds herself caught between the tides of her parents’ rocky relationship and a country in the midst of a revolution. Recording her daily thoughts and accounts of living with her abusive father, an alcoholic theater actor, Nieve uses her diary to express herself. From being sent away from her mother, her mother’s free-spirited and loving boyfriend, and her childhood city of Cienfuegos to being forced to call herself a Cuban “revolutionary Pioneer,” Nieve records in honest detail a life in which she loses those she loves the most—and can do nothing about it.

Through her diary entries, Nieve reveals the intimate details of a turbulent family life while painting an authentic portrait of the social and political unrest in Cuba under the rule of Castro.


Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought


Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

A Q&A with Wendy Guerra

Question: What inspired you to write Everyone Leaves?

Wendy Guerra: My parents' deaths, both in 2004, and the disappearance of a generation that is dying much sooner than its predecessors. The rediscovery of my childhood diary and the need to tell my life story through a girl in this fictitious socialist reality. I'd never known a book that spoke about life under socialism in a child's voice. In my childhood, Cuba was a place where parents had no say about whether you handled firearms at 13, or if you went to school by yourself in the countryside, or whether you aspired to university studies. Parents didn't control their children's destinies. So I decided to graft a story on this non-reality in a place that isn't what it seems, about a diaspora that every generation has had to deal with in its own way. Everyone Leaves is my exorcism from childhood and from my "inxile."

Q: Your narrator, Nieve, would be roughly the same age as you are today. Do you have anything in common?

WG: I used my own real diary as the spine for this novel, working in other stories in a kind of Aristotelian weave. I choose my own memories of what happened during that time. They were very tough times of silence and farewells. When I reread my diary, I decided to lower the heat a little bit, to be a little less judgmental than I'd been as a girl. Kids are usually sharper than any politician. They can tell what's going on and judge from a very honest perspective.

Q: Do you still keep a personal diary? If so, does it provide content for your fiction?

WG: Usually I write in my diary every day and then revise it, go over it with a more critical and literary rigor. Later, it becomes a novel.

Q: Why did you decide to write about Cuba?

WG: For me, what's important is that Cuba's story be told. Our lives--which have been lived in isolation, put on hold for 50 years, displaced from the markets, and incubated without capitalist references--are as complex as magic.

Q: What other books would you recommend to Amazon customers who are interested in Cuban life and history?

WG: No one can understand Cuba without reading Virgilio Piñera. And it's impossible to understand the sounds of Cuba without knowing the work of Nicolás Guillén.


From Booklist

The political and the personal come together—and both prove surprising—in this prize-winning novel based on the author’s diaries about growing up during and after the Cuban revolution. Translated from the Spanish, the entries (from 1978, when Nieve is seven years old, to 1990) are true to the young protagonist’s often bewildered viewpoint as she tries to sort through the adults’ mixed messages. Of course, “everyone leaves” who was part of the privileged old system but, later, so do many disappointed revolutionaries. Meanwhile, the regime is watching Nieve’s radical artist mother, who shouts at the government demonstration: “This is not what the revolution is about.” Never preachy, the commentary captures the monotony, isolation, and machismo—and the hard times—of life in the new Cuba. Moved to a government boarding school, Nieve tries to learn the rules: good table manners, for example, are bourgeois. She does have great sex, and she loves writing about it. But she hates military training: forget killing for the good of the nation. The novel, winner of the 2006 Bruguera Prize and translated into eight languages, tells a gripping story of wry contradictions and confusion. --Hazel Rochman

Product Details

  • File Size: 365 KB
  • Print Length: 267 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1612184332
  • Publisher: AmazonCrossing (November 27, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B008N1W01K
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #233,764 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
  •  Would you like to give feedback on images?


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The author of this book is primarily a poet, which is clear in the way this book is written. It's what I believe is called creative non-fiction - the basis is Guerra's diaries which cover the author's youth in Cuba, but this is not an autobiography. The girl in this novel, Nieve (which means "snow" in Spanish), has been living with her artist mother and the mother's Swedish partner when her father is successfully able to gain custody of her, claiming that the home environment is unsuitable (it's true that the Swedish boyfriend hates to wear clothes). The father is alcoholic and abusive. Nieve is forced to live with him in a remote mountain location where he works as a puppeteer for a theater group that puts on shows for the peasants. Nieve's father not only physically abuses her, he woefully neglects her, forgetting to feed her or take her to school, but imposing so many rules that she's unable to care for herself (by asking for food from others, for example). Eventually, the mother regains custody. Nieve spends time in a "re-education" school for ideologically weak youths and also attends a residential school for artists.

Her life is colorful and the book is engaging, but oddly missing are events outside of Nieve's life - the book does not describe what does not directly involve Nieve. Obviously, the austerity of life in Cuba form the ever-present backdrop of Nieve's life, however. The repressive atmosphere, in which no-one can be trusted and the penalties for ideological independence are severe, affect Nieve's life. For example, Nieve and her mother feel most comfortable talking to each other while standing in the lagoon or ocean, so that no-one can evesdrop. Books are hidden out of sight and even young students get into serious trouble for reading banned literature.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Does It Matter That This Is Cuba? January 10, 2013
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Nieve, the young Cuban protagonist of Wendy Guerra's novel Everyone Leaves, is a realist. The first hundred fifty or so pages of Guerra's book -- and Nieve's life from childhood to middle adolescence -- can usefully be characterized as a tribute to the value of lack of affect. Don't anticipate the joys of the future. You're bound to be disappointed. Don't be shocked or unduly anguished if your father gets drunk, forgets to feed you, and beats you instead. It comes with the territory. Don't be hurt or even a little surprised if your mother tries to have you committed to a state-run orphanage. After all, she's just as selfish, fearful, and ditzy in her small-time artsy way as your father is brutal, uncaring, and determined to inflict pain. That's just the way it is. The same with schools, institutions that are as impoverished and ill-suited to your own peculiar needs as a young artist beginning to develop her talent as your family, your neighborhood, your community, and your nation: don't expect anything good and you won't be disappointed.

Let's be sure not to misinterpret the overriding import of Nieve's young life. The message is not fear of the future, but unself-conscious indifference. If your world is clearly not the kind of place where good things happen to someone like you, don't expect miracles. Disappointment is the one source of pain over which Nieve has some control, and whether or not she is aware of it, she exercises it almost flawlessly.

With the exception of a one-time-only sexual interlude, Nieve's life is drab, dreary, and totally devoid of energizing sustenance. But Nieve does not complain.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Growing Up in Cuba: Everyone Leaves April 17, 2013
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
How does art survive a hostile social and political environment? Can it survive? How does an artist flourish, or even muddle through, when the inspiration and sources for one's art gradually leave, one after another, eventually leaving the artist alone?

These are the questions behind "Everyone Leaves," Cuban writer Wendy Guerra's semi-autobiographical novel of growing up in Cuba in the 1970s and 1980s, translated by Achy Obejas. It tells the story of Nieve ("Snow") Guerra, who watches her family and those of her friends fracture and fall apart under the weight of a deadening communist regime. Most eventually leave the country for Miami or Europe (everyone leaves, she keeps reminding herself); some "leave" or disappear within the country.

Nieve is an artist who gradually stops painting. She is also a survivor, due in no small part to the diary she begins to keep as a young child and maintains through adolescence and into young adulthood. The journal entries, in fact, are the structure of the book, beginning as brief if pointed and intelligent observations and continuing as longer entries as Nieve grows older. And there are gaps, which we can fill based on what we know and what we will know.

Through her diary, we follow Nieve from the small city of Cienfuegos to the mountains and finally to Havana. We watch her experience her parents' separation, their custody battle over her, her life with a brutal, alcoholic father, and finally a reunion with her mother. We see her grow as a young artist, and we watch as she continues to behave very much the independent in a society that demands conformity and acquiescence. We observe her friends gradually leave, and her acceptance of her isolation.

The diaries are important.
Read more ›
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Maybe for teenagers?
Written as a series of diary entries by a young girl - over a period of time. Very depressing in it's depiction of Castro's Cuba and the sociological impact of some of their... Read more
Published 1 month ago by Readerrover
2.0 out of 5 stars Dull.
There is a general rule of thumb that if you make it (100-your age) pages into a book, and you aren't captivated, you should give up, given that life and the number of books you'll... Read more
Published 3 months ago by KH1
4.0 out of 5 stars Thought provoking
This book shares some of the struggles of living in Cuba. There is little freedom, food, security or privacy. No one can be trusted!
Published 3 months ago by Mary Lee Ouditt
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant young girl details her life in Cuba
There is a haunting quality to this book. It has a sensuality and a mood that quickly overtakes like
fragrant tropical flowers on a humid night. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Linda J. Schiller-hanna
3.0 out of 5 stars Depressing
Nieve is a child trapped in Cuba during the communist revolution. She keeps a journal that (Kudos to the author) becomes more complex as Nieve grows from a child to a young... Read more
Published 8 months ago by book junkie
4.0 out of 5 stars Everyone Leaves
Basically this is a very intriguing story of a young girl living in restrictive deprivation in Cuba. The main character is appealing and the story is written. Read more
Published 8 months ago by janequinn
4.0 out of 5 stars Human suffering, untapped
I have so many emotions after reading this beautiful and disturbing portrait of a young girl named Nieve (the Spanish word for "snow') growing up in Cuba. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Carol Toscano
3.0 out of 5 stars Lost in translation?
To say young Nieve (meaning "snow") Guerra leads a stressful life is an understatement. Her mom is a radio commentator who is perpetually under scrutiny, as they live in Cuba. Read more
Published 9 months ago by E. M. Bristol
3.0 out of 5 stars Strange, just strange
I was disappointed in this. I normally appreciate foreign works translated into English, but this one didn't work for me. Read more
Published 9 months ago by CGScammell
3.0 out of 5 stars Touching story
Touching story but not a page turner. The character in this book writes a diary about her day to day experiences being raised by her mother in a communist country and her various... Read more
Published 9 months ago by The Nidy22
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews

More About the Author

Wendy Guerra was a child star in Cuba, working as a film and television actress and hosting a popular daily radio and TV news program for children, with elements of that experience inspiring the character Nieve in Everyone Leaves, which was based on the diaries she kept as a child and an adolescent. Everyone Leaves was awarded the first Bruguera Novel Prize on March 2, 2006, by the sole juror, acclaimed Catalan writer Eduardo Mendoza. When she returned from a visit to Spain to accept the award, she was removed from her post on the Cuban news program. Inspired by acclaimed diarist and novelist Anais Nin, Wendy sees her inspiration in her homeland and writes poetically of her existence as a Cuban.

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?



Forums

There are no discussions about this product yet.
Be the first to discuss this product with the community.
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 


Look for Similar Items by Category


ARRAY(0xa1213f18)