Author:Ernesto Che Guevera
Publisher: Harper Collins India
Rating: 4 out of 5
Source: Personal copy
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The book is personal journal of Ernest Che Guevera as he set on an expedition with his biochemist friend Alberto Garnado in motorcycle of course..The book is a tale of slow transformation of Che as he comes faces the plight of poor that later leads him onto a global iconic revolutionary..
Che Guevera is a marxist revolutionary and a global icon famous for his guerrilla warfare along with Fidel Castro throwing away the Cuban government..What made him stand apart from the rest of the revolutionaries is that he was not a Cuban but an Argentinean , he fought not his and his people but cruelty against humanity..Though the book was written in a period when he was still an adventure seeking medical student in early twenties whose spirit for different experience made him to take a trip with his friend Alberto Granado in Granado's motorcycle Norton 500 cc 'La Pedrosa'...Their plan was to volunteer themselves at the San Pablo Leper colony in Peru..The travel traverses through Latin American countries starting from Argentina through Andes to Chile to Peru to Ecuador to Columbia to Venezuela to Miami...
The journey is not completely on motorcycle as they had to abandon it halfway after it refuses to come to life.. Like any other travelogue the journey takes off like a good adventure...The two go onto an extend, introducing themselves to the press as international experts on Leprosy , they also use this paper clip to buy meals and shelter ..The turning point is when they travel through copper mine in Chile... Things starts to changes for Che at a conscious level as he goes along experiences that stirs him completely for example people going in search of work in mine where the working conditions were utterly poor with meager wage, people suffering from leprosy, tuberculosis without any aid dying in a devastating state..His bravery and his complete dedication to his profession is seen more than once, one night he swims to reach a village to visit a patient..His observations about life and its experiences are crisp..He is lyrical when he describes a farewell from a girl whom he meets along the travel..
They say journeys have a strength to change people,that really stands right for Che., From a fancy free traveler to politically,socially conscious person this book is a beautiful journey I loved to read...Granado is equally seen all through the book and he too stands out with his strong will power and this social responsibility towards the downtrodden..Their journey is not an easy one from the beginning as they are short of funds many nights living without food and shelter and a problematic bike..The narration is full of humour , Che is successful in depicting a clear picture of from a beautiful landscape to dreadful storms to the later experiences with people.....I read this book after reading Reminiscences of Cuban Revolutionary war, to know from where did it all began from..After reading this the picture becomes clear and complete.. You might have come across better travelogues and writing but this book is significant from the vantage what made Ernesto Che Guevera to the iconic Che...