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September 28, 2004


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How far does the conspiracy reach?

El general Sombra

By Arnoldo Tauler. A novel in Spanish. Softcover, 296 pages, ISBN 0-9714366-5-7,  $22.50, November  2004

“This novel has success written all over it: suspense, a meticulously crafted plot, and a subject that’s sure to grab the reader’s interest.”

—Carlos Alberto Montaner, Cuban commentator and activist (Madrid)

Cuba in the critical year of 1989: with communism in a state of global collapse, Fidel Castro fears that the country’s most popular military hero, General Arnaldo Ochoa, is becoming a political rival. Castro plots against Ochoa while Ochoa’s admirer, the "phantom general" Sombra, plots against Castro.


In 1994, writer and screen director Arnoldo Tauler arrived in the United States from Cuba with two suitcases: one with his clothes, the other with his manuscripts. He had been born 57 years earlier, in the city of Santiago de Cuba. A self-educated man who later graduated from the University of Oriente, he entered the field of TV production, becoming a director and screenwriter.

The author of numerous novels and short-story collections, Tauler is also the author of a manual for TV and film production, the third edition of which has recently been published in London. The present novel represents Tauler’s literary début in the U.S. He and his wife Irma live and work in Miami, while his two children and a grandson remain in Cuba.

"Arnoldo Tauler penetrates the secret, shadowy world of power in Cuba to give us a first-rate political fiction.... With strikingly novel means, he depicts Castro’s ambitions, fears and dark well of memories by submitting the leader to a dialogue with his own conscience. This tale of a desperate power struggle, which pulls the reader in from the first page, also floats a disturbing question: could such a conspiracy be under way in Cuba at this very moment?"

—Andrés Hernández Alende, Cuban-American writer and editor (Miami)


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