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Cuban-born artist shares experience of Castro’s revolution in new graphic novel

LatinaLista — The Cuban Revolution was a time in history that remains vivid in the memories of some Cuban Americans. Stories of personal hardship, sacrifice, loss, risk and torture have been shared among the Cuban American community ever since some were lucky enough to escape Castro’s domination.


Unfortunately, a lot of those stories never got shared with other Latinos, or the severity of those stories lessened over time with younger generations of Cuban Americans. But they are stories that still need to be told and understood by all ages and ethnicities.

One way to bridge that generational and demographic gap could lie in the form of what is known as graphic novels.

Looking like a comic book, the graphic novel tackles content deemed for “mature readers.” In this case, Vertigo, a brand under the DC Comics label has chosen to tell a story about the Cuban Revolution based on a true story.

“Cuba: My Revolution” tells the story of a 17-year-old upper class Cuban girl named Sonya, who is mesmerized by Castro’s promise of a new country. Torn between pursuing art and medicine, she decides to do both — art to satisfy her soul and medicine to help her country, squeezed in between her training for the Cuban militia.

She soon discovers that everything she believed Castro would do for Cuba has been a lie and it’s not long before she makes her way to the United States, taking her art with her.

Based on the personal experience of the graphic novel’s author, Cuban-born artist Inverna Lockpez, “Cuba: My Revolution” presents Inverna’s story in a haunting black-grey color scheme with an easy-to-read text that keeps readers turning the page to find out what happens to the young girl.

While telling the story from the perspective of the main characters, it’s the details that bring the story to life and make the Cuban Revolution and Castro’s regime come alive for those who know very little about either.

“Cuba: My Revolution” is due for release in September 2010.


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