yanique t, Reviewer
5 stars I am grateful to the publisher for sending me an advanced copy of this audiobook for review. What a truly informative and harrowing read. Prior to reading this, I had some knowledge about the broad strokes of what had occurred in the history of this country; however, in order to better understand the current state of affairs in Latin America and Central America specifically, I really wanted to get a better understanding of the details and the sequence of events that lead to modern day Guatemala. This book was a great resource for exactly that information that I was seeking. The author did a great job of incorporating first-person accounts and documentation of events , then patched the pieces together to really allow us to understand how everything eventually resulted in the horrific, historical events that are covered in this book. I like the way he incorporated both past and modern-day Guatemalan people. Telling the stories of people who were alive at different stages of Guatemalan history, really let us see how things changed and how the society’s response to these changes manifested. It's hard to read. It's hard to read how people were forced to adapt to such terrible conditions not only economically and socially, but also to live under a regime of fear and to accept these sorts of changes as normal and inescapable. The author goes through step-by-step each defining period in Guatemalan history , and spoke about how each of these things affected the people at different levels of society in. He also did not shy away from mentioning the involvement of external powers, like industries from first world countries, who in the interest of their profits helped to destabilize an already struggling country, and lead to the deaths of so many. It is also hard to read about how people can become so deranged when given power over others and to see how the Mayan population of Guatemala were treated when they were caught between the military state and the guerrilla opposition efforts. Guatemala is a country that has witnessed some of the worst human rights violations at the hands of the military. These people were living in a state of uncertainty and terror for decades. I think this is going to be a hard book for many people to read, and it hurts me to say this, but I feel like it's also the kind of book that a lot of people who should be reading it are not going to be interested in. I think that we as people owe it to ourselves to be educated in historical situations like this , I think we need to make sure we understand how these things happen and what the signs of these kinds of situations look like. I think it's also important for people from other countries to be aware that people are going through this currently, and when people are discussing topics of migration and immigration, that we take into account that we as a whole have all contributed in some way to the state of things in these countries. I recommend this book to everyone. I think everyone can benefit from knowing the history of this country and how everything played out. I will say that this subject matter is very hard to read and graphic so I would caution with that. I specifically recommend this to people who are interested in history, politics, and humanitarianism.