A New York Times Notable Book of the Year
Synopses & Reviews
Acclaimed around the world and a national best-seller, this is the definitive work on Che Guevara, the dashing rebel whose epic dream was to end poverty and injustice in Latin America and the developing world through armed revolution. Jon Lee Anderson's biography traces Che's extraordinary life, from his comfortable Argentine upbringing to the battle fields of the Cuban revolution, from the halls of power in Castro's government to his failed campaign in the Congo and assassination in the Bolivian jungle.
anderson has had unprecedented access to the personal archives maintained by Guevara's widow and carefully guarded Cuban government documents. He has conducted extensive interviews with Che's comrades some of whom speak here for the first time and with the CIA men and Bolivian officers who hunted him down. Anderson broke the story of where Guevara's body was buried, which led to the exhumation and state burial of the bones. Many of the details of Che's life have long been cloaked in secrecy and intrigue. meticulously researched and full of exclusive information, Che Guevara illuminates as never before this mythic figure who embodied the high-water mark of revolutionary communism as a force in history.
"Combining contradictory sources and an immense amount of detail, Anderson projects a multifaceted view of Guevara as a person, seething with ambiguities and complexities. This is an achievement that makes Che Guevara essential for anyone seriously interested in Guevara or the Cuban revolution." Jane Franklin, The Nation
"Superb....Mr. Anderson does a masterly job in evoking Che's complex character, in separating the man from the myth." The New York Times Book Review
"[Che's] ideal, that curious mixture of resoluteness and recklessness...is brilliantly evoked in Jon Lee Anderson's massive biography which traces, with exacting precision, the avatars of Che's epic life....The portrait is now as complete as it will ever be." The Times Literary Supplement (London)
"And enduring achievement. It is hard to imagine that any [other biography] will match the volume and detail of the research here....[Guevara's] victories and failures, equally spectacular, are part of our common history....Che lives, not only in this book, but in the world." The Boston Globe
"Excellent....[A]dmirably honest [and] staggeringly researched....It is unlikely that after Anderson's exhaustive contribution, much more will be learned about Guevara." Los Angeles Times
"The author's fondness for showering the reader with every detail he has uncovered makes this sprawling book sometimes tough slogging, but students of Che's life and deeds need look no farther than Anderson's volume." Kirkus Reviews
REVISED AND UPDATED THROUGHOUT Jon Lee Andersons definitive and acclaimed biography of Che Guevara manages to transcend the myth of Che and portray in unrivaled detail a complicated human being. In his quest to discover who the real Che was, Anderson moved to Havana and gained unprecedented access to the personal archives maintained by Ches widow. He spent months with Ches old friends in Argentina, where Che was born into an aristocratic family and went to medical school. He interviewed Ches comrades from battles fought in Cuba and the Congo and Bolivia, and he talked to figures on both sides of the Cold War, in Moscow and in the CIA.
The book completes the epic saga of an extraordinary life. In 1995, Anderson broke the story of how Ches body had been secretly hidden after his assassination in Bolivia in 1967. He recounts how the body was finally recovered, thirty years after the murder, brought back to Cuba, and interred in the place Che had won his most famous battle in the Cuban revolution. Meticulously researched, Andersons book reveals many details of Ches life that were long cloaked in secrecy and intrigue. This edition, which has been carefully revised and updated,
This New York Times Notable Book of the Year” is the definitive biography on Che Guevara, whose epic dream was to end poverty and injustice in Latin America through armed revolution. Andersons biography traces Ches extraordinary life, from his comfortable Argentine upbringing to the Cuban revolution, from the halls of power in Castros government to his failed campaign in the Congo and assassination in the Bolivian jungle.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 777-787) and index.
About the Author
Jon Lee Anderson began working as a reporter in 1979 for the Lima Times in Peru. During the 1980s he covered Central America, first for the syndicated columnist Jack Anderson and later for Time magazine. He has also written for The New York Times, The New Yorker, Harper's, Life, and The Nation and is the author of Guerrillas. Jon Lee Anderson lives in Spain with his family.