It is no secret that Costa Rica stands as a shiny beacon of democracy and literacy in Central America or that its history is markedly different than the surrounding countries. Did you ever wonder how that came to pass? Because Costa Rica is "the Switzerland" of Central America, many books have been written in elaborate detail about these events, enough to fill a library.
The University of Costa Rica now offers a concise portrait of the country's colorful history.A short, introductory chapter deals with the pre-Columbian era.The vast majority of the book delves into the development of civilization in Costa Rica in brief, easily digestible chapters.
The nearly one hundred twenty black & white photos, maps and illustrations add to the publication's non-classroom feel: there will not be a test at the end of the book.There is, however, a bibliography suggesting further publications for the more studious reader.
"The History of Costa Rica" has been recently updated to include the beginning of the term in office of Oscar Arias, the country's current president.The book is an excellent overview of the unique history of "the gem of Central America."