Books by Orestes Lorenzo

Released: Jan. 1, 1994

If Orestes Lorenzo didn't exist, Hollywood might have had to invent him—if it dared. In the early spring of 1991, the dashing fighter pilot fled Cuba in a Soviet-built MiG-23 and made it to Boca Chica Naval Air Station in the Florida Keys. Granted political asylum by the US, he immediately began trying to deliver his wife and two young sons as well, but despite repeated appeals to human- rights groups and world leaders (Bush, Castro, Gorbachev, et al.), his efforts proved futile. Undaunted, Lorenzo acquired an aging Cessna, flew back to Cuba, snatched his family from a busy coastal highway, and brought ``a plane filled with love'' back to America. Not too surprisingly, the adventure and romance of the Lorenzo story have captured the attention of the media and a public hungry for heroes. Liable to be lost in the show-biz hype about daredevil escapes, heart-rending separations, and conflicting political systems, unfortunately, is the fact that the former major has written a suspenseful and genuinely affecting account of his experiences. Among other matters, the Russian-trained aviator (now 37) offers a tellingly detailed appraisal of what it was like for him and his wife (a dentist) to come of age during the early years of Castro's revolution. Covered as well are the author's combat service in Angola (where Cuban forces were propping up a Marxist regime) and subsequent posting to the USSR at a time when glasnost was sweeping through Eastern Europe. Though on an upwardly mobile career track when he returned home, Lorenzo (with considerable support from his devoted spouse) resolved to break with Communism: The rest of the tale is, so to speak, history. Certain to grip the imagination and emotions (and to be published in both English and Spanish language editions). (First printing of 150,000; first serial rights to Vanity Fair; TV rights to Hearst Entertainment) Read full book review >