The idea for this book originated from the encouragement of friends and acquaintances, as they heard stories of students' lives of poverty and malnutrition in environmental conditions of almost 200 inches of rain, temperatures hovering around 100 degrees, humidity in the 90s.
It is a book of stories, stories of students' lives, their hardships, joys, and unbelievable successes, narrated by a teacher who believed students' existence outside of the classroom was as important to educating them as the actual learning process. The strategies used to conquer unimaginable human struggles, health problems and near miraculous recoveries.
The richness of the culture in spite of hardships, or maybe because of them, comes through every page: the poetry, music, declamation contests, religious processions, sports, etc.
The author finds it essential to mention stories of the men who lived in these same conditions, the laughs and enjoyment of community living, the jokes they played on one another, their absolute commitment to better the lives of their boys; their health problems and sad departures.
These were the times of the Somoza dictatorship, maintained by money from the United States; and the informal supportive relationship of the Catholic church and the oppressive government.
It's an adventure story that a reader will want to read from start to finish without stopping.