The Yankee Comandante: The Untold Story of Courage, Passion, and One American's Fight to Liberate Cuba

Michael Sallah and Mitch Weiss. Globe Pequot/Lyons, $26.95 (288p) ISBN 978-0-7627-9287-0
Pulitzer Prize–winning investigative journalists Weiss and Sallah (Tiger Force) use interviews with surviving revolutionaries to share the story of William Morgan, an American whose life was floundering in the U.S., but who redeemed himself in the fight to liberate Cuba from the dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista. Much of the story focuses on Olga Goodwin (née Rodriguez), a Cuban student activist who fled to the guerrillas after the police sought to arrest her. In the subsequent months she met Morgan, falling captive to his charm and bravery, and they were later married in the Cuban mountains. Morgan was not a minor character in the revolution; he became a well-known, if short-lived, national hero in Cuba after the successful overthrow of Batista. But as Fidel Castro's revolutionary movement gained power, Morgan was arrested and executed, and Olga imprisoned. Olga lives today in the U.S., and Sallah and Weiss interviewed her extensively. They also make clear Morgan's flaws: he had at least three wives and several children by them; was court martialed by the U.S. Army, serving time in prison; and was employed by and associated with known mobsters. Though the tale does not end happily, it's a romantic and entertaining read. Photos. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 02/02/2015
Release date: 01/01/2015
Genre: Nonfiction
Portable Document Format (PDF) - 288 pages - 978-1-4930-1646-4
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