The gripping trilogy of the León family, freedom fighters living under Fidel Castro’s regime in the 1960s, is now complete with the release of the historical novel On Freedom’s Shores by Middlesex Community College Professor Victor Triay. The last book, which is available at amazon.com, tells the tale of the León children who fled Castro’s Communist Cuba after the Bay of Pigs invasion as unaccompanied minors. The children first land in Miami but quickly end up in New York City where their lives take a series of unexpected turns.
The Unbroken Circle trilogy is the story of the fictional León family, whose peaceful, middle class existence is swept suddenly into a tempest of warfare, betrayal, and separation during the early years of the Cuban Revolution. In The Struggle Begins (2013), Goyo León, a devoted teacher and family man, is recruited into the anti-Castro underground after his father is killed at the hands of Castro’s henchmen. Unbeknownst to Goyo, his young cousins have also secretly joined the anti-Communist resistance. With the three cousins becoming more deeply involved in the pro-democracy struggle every day, tensions rise as the stakes for their homeland reach an all-time high.
In the second installment, Freedom Betrayed (2013), the three cousins participate in the Bay of Pigs invasion and battle Fidel Castro’s war machine. Their effort to rid their homeland of totalitarianism and establish democratic government fails when the invaders are betrayed by their American allies. As Castro finds himself unimpeded in his quest to bring Cuba under Communist rule, hundreds of thousands of Cubans flee and seek sanctuary in the United States
A Cuban American born and raised in Miami, Victor Triay, Ph.D., has written extensively about Fidel Castro and the Communist takeover of the island nation. He has published three academic, non-fiction books on Cuban exile history: Fleeing Castro: Operation Pedro Pan and the Cuban Children's Program (1999), the first book ever written about an exodus of over 14,000 unaccompanied child refugees from Castro’s Cuba and the program established in the United States to provide them care; Bay of Pigs : An Oral History of Brigade 2506 (2001), which won the 2001 Samuel Proctor Oral History Prize from the Florida Historical Society; and The Cuban Revolution: Years of Promise (2005, with Teo A. Babun). These books, along with his historical novels, are inspired by his community’s experience as Cuban exiles.
“I grew up hearing the stories of relatives and family friends who fought against Communism and for freedom, and I always hoped to tell a version of their story in a compelling way,” Triay said. “These novels have given me that opportunity and I am grateful for the many readers who are drawn to the León saga and this part of American history.”
Professor Triay, who teaches United States History, Western Civilization, and World Civilization at MxCC, will take part in book signings and readings at MxCC and other local venues this spring.