The Motorcycle Diaries: Notes on a Latin American Journey
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The Motorcycle Diaries: Notes on a Latin American Journey

3.78 of 5 stars 3.78  ·  rating details  ·  13,316 ratings  ·  781 reviews


The book of the popular movie STARRING GAEL GARCIA BERNAL

NOW A NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER



The young Che Guevara’s lively and highly entertaining travel diary, now a popular movie and a New York Times bestseller. This new, expanded edition features exclusive, unpublished photos taken by the 23-year-old Ernesto on his journey across a continent, and a tender preface by Aleida...more
Paperback, 175 pages
Published August 1st 2003 by Ocean Press (first published 1995)
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Riku Sayuj

These Diary notes provide us with an ernest and fetching account of a young Che, a middle-class kid, not yet embarked on the violent and heroic road that stretched past these early trails. Not particularly educational or insightful, but yet strangely moving.

The carefree bikers turn into compassionate observers of humanity along the course of this journey, thus fulfilling the purpose of the journey, at least in retrospect. The passion and the compassion shines through the entire text and a youth...more
Lit Bug
I have always been intrigued by this charismatic, utterly good-looking, athletic man who was instrumental to the toppling of the Cuban government, and who is now largely forgotten, remembered only as a mythological figure in legends about faraway lands. Suddenly this May, I chanced upon a biography of his in a book fair and grabbed it. At that time, I’d only heard of his name. I knew he was some kind of revolutionary. But nothing had prepared me for what was to come. The biography tormented me f...more
Shovelmonkey1
May 01, 2012 Shovelmonkey1 rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who want more than just kerouac in their gap year back pack
Recommended to Shovelmonkey1 by: bin diving freeness
Shelves: read-in-2010
Sometimes my job sees me heading off to the worst kind of places (chemical works and sewage plants being two prime examples), however sometimes the gods just smile down and I find myself being sent somewhere really good. Really good, like where? Well, I'll tell you. I've been sent to work in a library for five days.

WHOO HOOOOOOOOO!

The local liberry (to quote Richard Derus) has been closed for a big refurbishment which partially involves whole scale demolition of parts of the building. Want to d...more
Ash
I wanted to read this book so badly, mainly because I wanted to read about Che. He is such a popular icon and you see so many people wearing t-shirts with his image on them etc. I knew very little about him and that was the main reason for picking up this book. I would say I read more from Wikipedia, than from the book. I would open Wikipedia to read more about the cities mentioned in the book. I also read stuff about Fiedel Castro and few more people mentioned in the book. Apart from Che's pers...more
Matthew
This is a first-hand account of Ernesto "Che" Guevara's trip across South America with his good friend. Guevara is not a professional writer and it shows in his straight-forward delivery of the material. It's a diary and it reads like a diary. There is very little exposition here. It's just a blow-by-blow account of the events that took place.

What I found interesting was that Che was a passionate medical student who just wanted to help people, quite in contrast to his later guerrilla life with C...more
Mahendra
His account begins: This is not a story of heroic feats, or merely the narrative of a cynic; at least I do not mean it to be. It is a glimpse of two lives running parallel for a time, with similar hopes and convergent dreams. In nine months of a man’s life he can think a lot of things, from the loftiest meditations on philosophy to the most desperate longing for a bowl of soup — in total accord with the state of his stomach. And if, at the same time, he’s somewhat of an adventurer, he might live...more
محمد على عطية
هذا الكتاب يسرد وقائع رحلة قام بها ارنستو (تشى) جيفارا مع صديقه ألبرتو جرينادو على ظهر دراجة نارية عبر أمريكا اللاتينية بدءاً من مدينتهما -قرطبة- بالأرجنتين و ذلك فى عام 1951/1952, و كان عمره وقتها 24 سنة و لا يزال فى السنة النهائية فى كلية الطب.
من خلال السرد نرى بعينى جيفارا صورة لأمريكا اللاتينية فى هذا العصر, و إذا اعتبرنا أن هذا الكتاب من أدب الرحلات فبذلك سنبخسه حقه....فبأمكان أى منا أن يزور نفس الأماكن و نخرج بوصف قريب لها..أما البشر, فيعتمد هذا على إحساسك بهم....و لابد أنك ستتخيل ما هى نظ...more
Mel Vincent
This book told me how Ernesto Guevara transformed from a humble and passionate medical student into a articulate, cunning and brilliant revolutionary who not only changed the face of the entire Latin American continent but shaped the perspectives and the thoughts of millions of people from all the world over.

This book was eloquently penned and I thought that I was literally reading a novel. Che Guevara could have been a novelist or a writer and it would have produced a significant impact as well...more
Kali Srikanth
Translated by his daughter, this book is a travel diary of Ernesto Che Guevara as an enthusiastic & excited youth, who planned an adventurous trip to all of Latin America, on a Motorcycle, along with a friend.

Book is enriched by rare collection of photographs that boasts of places they visited, people they met, food they ate & hiccups they experienced. One thing is clearly evident; they carried lot of energy with them. Sure they were low on fuel, finance & luck, but they got great pa...more
Julia
Aug 08, 2007 Julia rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: those interested in Che and Latin Literature
Although it took me almost a month to read this relatively short book, I found it very interresting and written in a literary reflective style. It made me wish my journal sounded as coherent and intelligent. The Diary did a great job expressing the feelings and thoughts of a young man who changed from his journey through Latin America. It was really cool to get into the young Che's head and see how, why, and when he began to change into the revolutionary icon so many of us know him as today. Sin...more
yamami
الرحلات/الأسفار تمنحنا ، تُعلمنا الكثير .. تُرينا الصورة من كل الزوايا .. تُعيد فلسفة الحياة في قلوبنا .. أؤمن أن الإنسان يتغير وتتوسع معارفة بعد كل رحلة سفر يقوم بها ، فكيف إذا كانت الرحلة لـ عام كامل وبرفقة صديق على دراجة نارية؟

الكتاب ممتع ، وتفاصيل الرحلة غاية في البساطة والجمال
أجمل ما في الكتاب إحساس الحرية العميق ..

؛

أغبط من يَملك روحاً توّاقة للإرتحال مع القدرة على ذلك
Jim
Long before he became a martyred revolutionary icon made to order for hipster T-shirts, Ernesto "Che" Guevara was a goofy and even funny middle class kid from Argentina. While in his early twenties, he talked his fellow med student Alberto Granado into a trip across South America. How? Why, on Alberto's rickety Norton 500 motorcycle, nicknamed La Poderosa II ("The Mighty One II"). This book is the story of their journey, lasting approximately until he and Alberto split up in Venezuela, where the...more
Nikhil
This is a book which everybody in their 20s need to read. At a time when everyone is trying to settle down into a career which would reap harvests eventually, where you dream of going on your dream trips eventually, where you would want to read that book or draw the painting or write the poem, eventually; we have a book about a 20 something who does it all. The story of Che before he became The Che, when he still is a rash youngster hot blooded and filled with hunger for adventure. In spite of w...more
Joshin John
Honestly, I didn't like the literature much. But Che's rendering of first-hand experiences with poverty, disease and lives of the Latin American people wouldn't fail to touch you.
Esraa Muhammed
من امتع الكتب اللى قريتها ل ارنستو بل واقوها لانه كان زينا مجرد طالب ف السنه النهائيه للكليه مكنش وقتها الثائر البطولى اللى بننظر ليه بعين الاعجاب وخلاص من خلال رحلته شوفت كم التحول والتبلور ل ارنستو ودى كانت البدايه الحقيقه والمعايشه للواقع عن قرب..اعتقد كل زميل بكليه الطب لازم يقراها عشان يتعلم بس شغف المعرفه والبحث والانطلاق ..رحله حول قاااااااااااااااره بمتوسيكل ياله من جنون ويالها من رحله سوف تغير واقع امركيا اللاتنيه فيما بعد
Vida
This book has been on my list for years. I was finally forced to read it for a Latin American History Course that I am taking.

As I read it, I became very skeptical. How could Che Guevara be such an eloquent writer and have such an enormous foundation of political history in 1951/1952? He must have added a lot when he went over it an edited it.

The biggest thing that struck me was his passion for communism which was tied to his position of authority in the communist movement. So, I could not look...more
Jim
I started this book with low expectations, and luckily they were exceeded. The movie version was by comparison, not very good - two med students hit the road on a beat-up motorcycle and spend their time fixing the bike, hustling drinks and meals, and chasing women.

The book expands on the movie version, luckily, and we get to hear more about young Che's impressions of his developing continent. Knowing Geuvara's career as as future revolutionary politician, it is easy to read these pages and see t...more
Reyhan
Che is one of the figure I admire for his courage and idealism. And this is his diary which he wrote when he and his friend was having a journey crossing the South America from south to north by riding a motorcycle (well, at the beginning actually. Most half till the end they traveled by foot, hitch hiking, and rafting through the Amazonian river).
OK, probably because this is a diary it doesn't contain a literacy magnitude that you could appreciate, but you could admire its "essence" of the jour...more
Manash
Clarification:: this is not abt "Che" but an ordinary young guy just like thousand others who nurtures the dream of exploring the world around"

The very fact that this book is by none other than "Che" may give you the notion that the book might be imbued with the philosophy,ideas that Che associated himself in the later part of his life.. And that was one reason i was not quite excited abt picking this up.. Bt soon after i had started with an unmerited apprehension i realized i could not hv been...more
Atlas
The Motorcycle Diaries is a book about the early travels of Ernesto Che Guevara and his friend Alberto Granada. At the time, Che was a 23 year old medical student and Alberto was a 29 year old biochemist. Together they travelled 5,000 miles all over South America on an old single cylinder Norton Motorcycle which they called La Ponderosa meaning The Mighty One. They passed through Argentina, Chile, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Panama, and then to Miami before returning back to Argentina. T...more
abcdefg
What a beautiful, amazing book.

This is Che's personal account of his journey with his companion Alberto Granado through Latin America on their motorcycle dubbed La Poderosa II.

Only 23, he begins his journey as a medical student and emerges with a new perspective of South America. This perspective informs his future as a political revolutionary.

His compassion for the proleteriat as he describes miners who work in deplorable and dangerous conditions, the Indians of Peru being carted off in trucks...more
Neha
We all have read about great historical explorers born to be wild, to wander and discover new worlds. Their journeys sometimes lead to new lands, hidden treasures, ancient discoveries or sometimes nothing but one thing they do achieve and that is discovering oneself. These travels through unknown throw various challenges, opportunities, learnings, experiences, choices and threats.. and these change you by each day sometimes making you stronger by rising to the occasion and surviving the toughest...more
Ryan
Had to see what the fuss was all about. I found the chronicle well-written, and of course knowing the context of the rest of his history-making life, I do find it remarkable to have a document of his developing mind. You get to know Guevara as a merrymaker, a resourceful engineer, and a charismatic person. And his writing is good, that is put on clear display. But I felt myself looking for some form of evidence of the great change that he underwent politically. I didn't find it. He goes into bri...more
JJ Lehmann
May 31, 2009 JJ Lehmann rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: anyone interested in Latin American culture and history.
I have done research in the pan-Mayan movements within contemporary Guatemala. In addition to this, I help construct a undergraduate class about Indigenous religions of the Americas. I also took a class on the politics of the Carri bean. Part of all of this included studying revolutionary movements. So, I was already pretty familiar with el Che. Of course, I have seen the film based on this book as well.

I believe it is a little unfair to judge this book as if he were a professional writer. This...more
Strey
I purposefully didn't & haven't looked at reviews for this beforehand, as I wanted to form my own opinion of this 'classic' travelogue and without all the 'baggage' that goes with what became of the author afterwards, it was a nice effort at travel writing. Honestly recorded & touchingly written.

I loved the often subtle, sometimes more obvious, comic irony in his words - much like a good Shakespearian comedy, with 'asides' a-plenty! Lines such as "I began dressing slowly, a task which wa...more
Fuentes
Understanding a legend or just going with the flow of the masses is what most people do. Understanding not just the man but also the cause of his actions is what this book will offer. Ernesto "El Che" Guevara is among one of the most recognized people all over the globe. This book gives you the answer as to why this young medical student who's aim was to become a Doctor became such an important figure during the Cuban revolution and a legend of his time. Love the man or hate him this book gives...more
Aby John Mathew
The book accounts the trip, Che Guvera had across south america with his friend alberto. What makes this book different is the straight froward material coming from a medical student who is totally unprofessional in writing. Its a diary so its read like a diary - something straight from someone who witness the darkness for this first time. It was really cool to get into the young Che's head and see how, why, and when he began to change into the revolutionary icon so many of us know him as today....more
Benny Livingston
This book gives you a very nice first hand (though somewhat biased) view of the state of Latin America during the cold war and the other countries interferences into it. Following young Ernesto and his good friend Alberto as they go on a motorcycle journey through Central and South America, seeing first hand the problems the people people of these places face and the unfairness they are subjected to. Written as a diary this novel gives you feel for Ernesto as it shows his feelings and his though...more
Joyce
"The Motorcycle Diaries" documents the journey of young Ernesto Guevara through Argentina, Chile, Peru, Colombia and Venezuela. Together with his friend Alberto Granado he travels through those countries on a motorcycle, between 1951 and 1952. This journal is not a dusty, political biography. And it's also not just an ordinary journey. It's so beautiful to see how Ernesto empathizes with ordinary people and how his political extremism is developed along the way. Guevara was a very important man,...more
trina
i loved this insight into the man before the myth. his writing is evocative, so you feel you are right there with him on the road, hungry, dirty, exhilirated, and seeing the world as it truly is for the first time. i can't imagine a person (who has a heart) journeying through latin america even today, especially from a doctor's point of view, and not concluding the same thing as che: things have to change. individual efforts here and there mean nothing in the face of such widespread poverty and...more
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خطأ في اسم المترجم 1 21 Jul 17, 2012 01:56AM  
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Ernesto "Che" Guevara, commonly known as El Che or simply Che, was a Marxist revolutionary, physician, author, intellectual, guerrilla leader, diplomat, and military theorist. A major figure of the Cuban Revolution, since his death Guevara's stylized visage has become an ubiquitous countercultural symbol and global icon within popular culture.

His belief in the necessity of world revolution to adva...more
More about Ernesto Guevara...
Guerrilla Warfare The Bolivian Diary: Authorized Edition Reminiscences of the Cuban Revolutionary War: Authorized Edition Back on the Road (Otra Vez): A Journey Through Latin America مذكرات أرنستو تشي جيفارا

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“I knew that when the great guiding spirit cleaves humanity into two antagonistic halves, I will be with the people.” 53 likes
“The first commandment for every good explorer is that an expedition has two points: the point of departure and the point of arrival. If your intention is to make the second theoretical point coincide with the actual point of arrival, don't think about the means -- because the journey is a virtual space that finishes when it finishes, and there are as many means as there are different ways of 'finishing.' That is to say, the means are endless.” 18 likes
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