Saturday, February 26, 2022

Review: It Would Be Night in Caracas

It Would Be Night in Caracas It Would Be Night in Caracas by Karina Sainz Borgo
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I'm trying to read books from the last few countries in my around the world project that I've been working on since 2012, and It Would Be Night in Caracas was recommended by several people for Venezuela.

The author is a journalist from Venezuela who relocated to Madrid, and the main character of the novel follows a similar path. The novel is so focused on her life and struggles without a lot of context so I had to do a lot of reading about Venezuela - its government, the poverty, the violence - it's all there in the background but not something I knew a lot about. And the way the main character encounters it is as a woman alone - at the beginning she has to bury her mother who died because there was no health care infrastructure, without family because they were either dead or unwilling to risk traveling. It isn't long before she decides she has to flee the country, and while a lot of convenient things have to happen for that to work, it is still harrowing.

Interestingly, Venezuela has been in the news this week because they blamed the U.N. and United States for what is happening in Ukraine. That initiated another internet rabbit hole, to find Venezuela closely aligned with Russia and Cuba.

The other thing I did was to spend some time in Google Maps, looking at some of the amazing rainforest landscapes found in the south of the country, and read recent stories about an American who has been held under espionage charges for several years.

You'll see below that this took me a while to read - it's because the violence would make me put it aside for a while.

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