Looking for an actually good version of the books you skimmed in college?
Get ready for thrills and chills in Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia!
Moreno-Garcia is like a sniper. She aims at you for days on end, and then she fires one, piercing shot.
Definitely read all of the supplementary material in the back (if your edition comes with such things). Moreno-Garcia understood the assignment, that’s for sure. I haven’t read any of the other books she mentioned taking inspiration from (to my recollection, anyway), but I definitely recognized “The Yellow Wallpaper” and “The Fall of the House of Usher” influences.
Moreno-Garcia is seemingly on a mission to publish at least one work under every genre, so if gothic horror isn’t your thing, check out her site; you will find something that you like. Or if you’re like me, you’ll find a bunch of things you like! I’ve already got Gods of Jade and Shadow and The Return of the Sorceress on my TBR.
Noemí at High Place is basically what it’s like to be in retail and food service: someone exciting who constantly has to appeal to willfully boring people—complete with the place being bad for your health! I adore this aspect of the story. This isn’t a drag against how Moreno-Garcia constructed the High Place characters; they are the perfect villains for this protagonist, as well as the perfect villains to root against.
Mexican Gothic is the attention-keeping version of all the literature my professors made me read in college. Sure, part of it might be that I’m not dreading any essays after I read it; but it has the feel of a book people are going to study. And it should be studied, frankly. It’s saying more important things than those books did—or just as important, at the bare minimum. If you like writing essays, pick up Mexican Gothic.
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