The book, which features more than 200 black and white photographs, portrays the history of a people in exile. "It contains stories of the heroes and celebrities of the past and present and is a testament to the ordinary people-shopkeepers, factory workers, artists and teachers-whose lives and passion contributed to making the Cuban American community what it is today," Hernández said.
(Attention local editors: Hernández will appear for book talks and be available for interviews June 16, 2 p.m., at M&A Hispanic Books, Bergenline Ave. & 19th St., Union City; June 19, 8 p.m., Barnes & Noble, Rt. 3, Clifton;June 27, 7 p.m., Watchung Booksellers, Watchung Plaza, Montclair; and July 13, 1 p.m., at the stand-alone Borders Books store on Rt. 17, Paramus.)
"Cubans in America" was created as a companion volume to a documentary that Antón produced, which is to be aired on WPBT-TV in Miami and other PBS stations.
The documentary tells the story of Cubans in what is now the United States, beginning in the 16th century with the settlement of St. Augustine. Two centuries later, Cuba came to the aid of the young colonies by contributing soldiers and money to the American Revolution.
America then became a political refuge for Cubans, starting with the first exodus in the 1820s, when the island sought freedom from Spain.
In the 20th century new refugees fleeing Castro's regime brought an unmistakable Cuban flavor to Miami and points north of the Eastern seaboard, including Union City and West New York. Events such as the Bay of Pigs invasion and the Mariel boatlift, brought defeat and betrayal to these exiles, but also new hope for freedom and democracy in their beloved island.
Antón, a resident of Florida, is the co-creator of the films "Adios Patria" and "Forever Present: Brothers to the Rescue," which aired on public television.
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