Embark on a literary adventure through the pages of these recommended books about Nicaragua. Explore its turbulent history, cultural richness, and the profound impact of war and revolution on its people. This article contains links to Amazon, from which, as an Amazon Associate, this website will earn a small commission if you make any purchases. Visit our Affiliate Disclosure Page for more info.
Nicaragua could be the Central American country with more to say than anywhere else in the region. If you’re interested history, geopolitics, war, revolution, and the human spirit, that is. It’s a fascinating and country with a tragic past that seeps into the present.
If you’re collecting book recommendations in Central America, Nicaragua could well be the best place to start. With its culture of poetry (Nicaragua was the home, after all, of Ruben Dario), the Land of Lakes and Volcanoes is a literary treasure trove, which is reflected in the amount of books featuring the country.
Looking for some reading material this weekend? Check out our favorite books about Panama. From political intrigue to the Panama Canal, these books will help connect you with this fascinating country!https://t.co/AqTalRR9QP
— Central America Living (@VidaAmerica) June 30, 2023
From political intrigue, revolution, and civil war to tales of love and family, the below books all pack a punch for anyone seeking the best Nicaragua reading material to accompany their travels:
“Blood of Brothers: Life and War in Nicaragua” by Stephen Kinzer
Journalist Stephen Kinzer presents a comprehensive account of the Sandinista revolution and the subsequent Contra war, providing insights into Nicaragua’s tumultuous recent history. The book delves into the political dynamics, international influences, and the experiences of ordinary Nicaraguans caught in the midst of the conflict.
“Fire from the Mountain: The Making of a Sandinista” by Omar Cabezas
Omar Cabezas recounts his personal journey as a Sandinista guerrilla during the revolutionary struggle, providing an intimate and vivid account of his experiences. The book offers a unique perspective from within the Sandinista movement.
“The Country Under My Skin: A Memoir of Love and War” by Gioconda Belli
A powerful memoir by Gioconda Belli, a Nicaraguan writer and activist, chronicling her personal experiences and involvement in the Sandinista revolution. The book offers intimate insights into the struggle for social change and the complexities of love and activism during times of war.
“The Jaguar Smile: A Nicaraguan Journey” by Salman Rushdie
Salman Rushdie shares his observations and experiences of Nicaragua in the 1980s. He explores the political and cultural landscape of the country, delving into the Sandinista revolution and the aspirations of the Nicaraguan people.
“Nicaragua: Emerging From the Shadow of the Eagle” by Thomas W. Walker
Analyzing Nicaragua’s history, politics, and socio-economic conditions. The book offers a comprehensive understanding of Nicaragua’s challenges and aspirations within the context of global power dynamics.
“Myths and Legends of Nicaragua” by Norlan Daniel Matute Tecero
What is says on the tin. A magical compilation of the most popular myths and legends of Nicaragua.
“Operation Nicaragua” by Collin Glavac
A classic and fast-paced spy thriller about a CIA officer racing to rescue a tech billionaire in Nicaragua from the clutches of the Russians and Cubans. Dumb but fun.
“The Naturalist in Nicaragua” by Thomas Belt
Originally published in 1874, this fascinating book chronicles the journeys of mining engineer Thomas Belt as he navigates the lush tropical landscapes of Nicaragua’s rivers, valleys, forests, and lakes.
What are your favorite books about Nicaragua?
We hope that at least some of the books listed above will provide you with a deeper understanding of Nicaragua’s history, culture, and people. Whether you’re relaxing on Pacific beaches in San Juan del Sur, enjoying Caribbean island life on Big or Little Corn, or exploring the colonial centers of León or Granada, Nicaragua will captivate you even more once you’ve learned more about the country.
James Dyde is the editor of centralamerica.com. He lives in Escazu, Costa Rica.