Telex from Cuba (Compact Disc)
July 2008 Indie Next List
“Set in the last days of Cuba's golden age (at least, for American businessmen), this saga, at once familial and national, chronicles the drama of Castro's coming coup upon a family stuck in the center of an unstoppable storm. Kushner's storytelling -- as detailed as it is colorful; as truthful as it is fictional -- reads like a vast mural in prose, covering the reader's imagination with pages of forceful action and forthright emotion.”
— Steve Shapiro, Rainy Day Books, Fairway, KS
Finalist for the National Book Award for Fiction The debut novel by New York Times bestselling author Rachel Kushner, called "shimmering" (The New Yorker), "multilayered and absorbing" (The New York Times Book Review), and "gorgeously written" (Kirkus Reviews).Young Everly Lederer and K.C. Stites come of age in Oriente Province, where the Americans tend their own fiefdom--three hundred thousand acres of United Fruit Company sugarcane that surround their gated enclave. If the rural tropics are a child's dreamworld, Everly and K.C. nevertheless have keen eyes for the indulgences and betrayals of the grown-ups around them--the mordant drinking and illicit loves, the race hierarchies and violence. In Havana, a thousand kilometers and a world away from the American colony, a cabaret dancer meets a French agitator named Christian de La Mazi re, whose seductive demeanor can't mask his shameful past. Together they become enmeshed in the brewing political underground. When Fidel and Ra l Castro lead a revolt from the mountains above the cane plantation, torching the sugar and kidnapping a boat full of yanqui revelers, K.C. and Everly begin to discover the brutality that keeps the colony humming. Though their parents remain blissfully untouched by the forces of history, the children hear the whispers of what is to come. Kushner's first novel is a tour de force, haunting and compelling, with the urgency of a telex from a forgotten time and place.