A dark, foreboding retelling of Jane Eyre and The Haunting of Hill House – a Mexican god-like family, psychedelic mushrooms, and incest.
READ IF YOU…
- Enjoy twisted retellings
- Want a moody read
- Are fine with hints of incest
- Like gothic reads
Title: Mexican Gothic | Author: Silvia Moreno-Garcia| Rating: 4/5
A gripping and dark retelling of Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights. Mexican Gothic delivers a moody, manipulative house, psychedelic mushrooms, and a strong female protagonist.
When I picked up Mexican Gothic, I expected a folkloric Jane Eyre based on Mexican tales and legends. But the book is far more twisted and insidious than that – It’s more like a mesh of The Haunting of Hill House, with a house filled with manipulative mold and fungi that seep into the mind and twist every thought.
I loved it. With all the high praise Mexican Gothic was getting, I was afraid it wouldn’t deliver on my high expectations. But it did. The only complaint I have is towards the end, a few things seemed a bit cliche, like the man-god who believes in eugenics and wants to keep his immortal powers within the family, and therefore engages in incest. Still, even with the Haunting of Hill House vibes, the story delivered just as much as Hill House did.
The book also reminded me of Nancy Drew with the charming, pretty, easy-going Noemí who can befriend everyone and turn them into her ally. Coupled with her smarts and sleuthing skills, it’s clear the main protagonist draws from Nancy Drew’s personality. And though I wish she were less likable, it made the plot move along and kept things credible.
The only things that could be improved was in the writing where things are repeated too many times. It was as if the author was trying to make sure the reader didn’t forget, but it was unnecessary.
Mexican Gothic had everything I needed in a book: the gothic feel, frightened and untrusting villagers, suspense, a haunted house, unreliable characters, and set in the 1950s. I loved the feeling of being stuck in a malicious house, with a cemetery filled with the bodies of villagers who perished after they got too close to the family who owned the house. Coupled with mass graves, opium, and a witch doctor of sorts, the book delivered on many counts. Give me a malicious moldy haunted house that twists your mind anytime.
A beautifully written gothic suspense that will leave you wanting more, Mexican Gothic is worth the read. I already plan to pick up Gods of Jade and Shadow by the author, and I expect just as superb a read as Mexican Gothic. Silvia Moreno-Garcia is likely to become one of my go-to authors if her other books are anything like Mexican Gothic.