The Guevara home contained more than 3000 books which allowed Guevara to be an enthusiastic and eclectic reader with interests including Karl Marx William Faulkner André Gide Emilio Salgari and Jules Verne. "
Guevara was reluctant to return to Cuba because Castro had made public Guevara's "farewell letter"—a letter intended to only be revealed in the case of his death—wherein he severed all ties in order to devote himself to revolution throughout the world. The missile crisis further convinced Guevara that the world's two superpowers (the United States and the Soviet Union) used Cuba as a pawn in their own global strategies.
As a young medical student Guevara traveled throughout South America and was moved by the poverty hunger and disease he witnessed. Guevara soon rose to prominence among the insurgents was promoted to second-in-command and played a pivotal role in the victorious two-year guerrilla campaign that deposed the Batista regime. Guevara remains both a revered and reviled historical figure polarized in the collective imagination in a multitude of biographies memoirs essays documentaries songs and films.