As Brooke and I were writing The Insider Guide to San Juan del Sur we started to compile a list of books to help our readers learn more about Nicaragua and its history.
While these books won’t help you decide what to do each day, where to stay or how to get there (that’s what The Insider Guide is for) they will help round out your knowledge about the country.
All the books on the list are great so we have no problem recommending them to you (and using our affiliate link which will take you to Amazon).
We’ve kicked off the list with Rubén Darío as he leads the way in Nicaragua’s literary tradition. But if reading poetry is not your style there are options for you to consider:
Rubén Darío, Stories and Poems/Cuentos y Poesías: A Dual-Language Book, edited by Stanley Applebaum, offers a good introduction to Darío’s body of work. An English translation is provided next to the Spanish text.
Salman Rushdie visited Nicaragua at the height of the Contra war and his account, The Jaguar Smile: A Nicaraguan Journey, offers an accessible glimpse of this defining time in Nicaragua’s history.
If you are keen to dig a little deeper into the Somoza era and the Sandinista Revolutions, Walker’s Nicaragua: Living in the Shadow of the Eagle provides in-depth coverage and exposes the breadth of US influence on Nicaragua.
The Country Under My Skin: A Memoir of Love and War, written by Nicaraguan born Gioconda Belli, describing her experiences as a member of the revolutionary Sandinista movement.
Thomas Belt, The Nationalist in Nicaragua. A combination travelogue and natural history book first published in 1874. Follow the author as he navigates the tropical rivers, valleys, forests, and lakes of Nicaragua.
501 Spanish Verbs by Christopher Kendris provides 501 commonly used Spanish verbs. The verbs are conjugated in all tense forms, arranged alphabetically by infinitive, and defined in English. It is essentially the bible of Spanish verb books and should be in every household of any expat that lives in Nicaragua.
We’ve only just started building this reading list and we’d love to expand it into something more definitive.
So what’s on your bookshelf?
Please leave a comment recommending your favorite book on Nicaragua.