ARC Review: Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

If you’re looking for a compelling and excellently plotted addition to Gothic horror set in 1950s Mexico, look no further than Mexican Gothic!

Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia is a truly creepily & excellently plotted horror novel set in 1950s Mexico! Click To Tweet

About Mexican Gothic

Publisher: Del Rey  |  Release Date: June 30, 2020  |  Pages: 352
Genre: Adult, Gothic Horror  |  Format: eARC  |  Source: Publisher via Netgalley

Mexican Gothic coverAn isolated mansion. A chillingly charismatic artistocrat. And a brave socialite drawn to expose their treacherous secrets. . . .

From the author of Gods of Jade and Shadow comes “a terrifying twist on classic gothic horror” (Kirkus Reviews) set in glamorous 1950s Mexico—“fans of classic novels like Jane Eyre and Rebecca are in for a suspenseful treat” (PopSugar).
After receiving a frantic letter from her newly-wed cousin begging for someone to save her from a mysterious doom, Noemí Taboada heads to High Place, a distant house in the Mexican countryside. She’s not sure what she will find—her cousin’s husband, a handsome Englishman, is a stranger, and Noemí knows little about the region.

Noemí is also an unlikely rescuer: She’s a glamorous debutante, and her chic gowns and perfect red lipstick are more suited for cocktail parties than amateur sleuthing. But she’s also tough and smart, with an indomitable will, and she is not afraid: Not of her cousin’s new husband, who is both menacing and alluring; not of his father, the ancient patriarch who seems to be fascinated by Noemí; and not even of the house itself, which begins to invade Noemi’s dreams with visions of blood and doom.

Her only ally in this inhospitable abode is the family’s youngest son. Shy and gentle, he seems to want to help Noemí, but might also be hiding dark knowledge of his family’s past. For there are many secrets behind the walls of High Place. The family’s once colossal wealth and faded mining empire kept them from prying eyes, but as Noemí digs deeper she unearths stories of violence and madness.

And Noemí, mesmerized by the terrifying yet seductive world of High Place, may soon find it impossible to ever leave this enigmatic house behind.

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My Review of Mexican Gothic

ARC photo of Mexican Gothic

✨ You can read an excerpt over at EW!

I devoured this book in one sitting; I simply couldn’t pry my eyes away until the end… CREEPY house, CREEPY people, & excellently plotted Gothic thriller set in 1950s Mexico that you won’t be able to put down!

“He is trying to poison me. You must come for me, Noemí. You have to save me.”

The tightly woven narrative of Mexican Gothic fills you with a sense of foreboding early on, that tension slowly builds as the story progresses. The atmosphere is immersive and eerie, but so are the characters. Everyone and everything filled me with unease and I love how ominous and horrifying the book is.

“They’re cursed, I tell you, and that house is haunted. You’re very silly or very brave living in a haunted house.”

This is definitely a plot & mystery-driven novel, but I love that all of the characters feel as real as the main character and narrator Noemí. She’s a vain socialite in her 20s, a bit unlikeable for me but also caring for her cousin and deeply inquisitive. I like her strength to buck convention and challenge societal expectations, and I appreciated how nuanced she felt – unlikable, yet I found myself rooting for her.

“In a sense all dreams foretell events, but some more clearly than others.”

I love how time and reality slowly begin to blur. Like the fog that blankets the mansion’s grounds, there’s an eerie dreamlike quality where you’re not sure what you’re seeing. (Honestly, this is what I wished The Haunting of Hill House was.) I loved how everything pieced together into a truly horrific last quarter of the book that left my horror-loving heart so satisfied!

Overall, this book was incredible and I can’t stop thinking about it a week later. Mexican Gothic has a slow start that is true to the Gothic Horror genre and builds tension slowly. If you liked Crimson Peak, this book matches that aesthetic and vibes well in my opinion.

Content warnings: body horror, cannibalism, child death, gore, incest, racism, sexual assault

eARC provided by the publisher in exchange for my honest review. This did not affect the contents of my review. Quotations are from an uncorrected proof and may be changed upon final publication.

Are you a fan of gothic horror? Have you read Mexican Gothic yet or is it on your TBR?

spacer_wLet’s go on another adventure together!

21 Comments

  1. Evelyn Coenen

    June 23, 2020 at 1:19 AM

    Great review! I’m so excited to pick this one up, I absolutely loved her previous release!

    (www.evelynreads.com)

    1. Kal

      September 19, 2020 at 8:41 PM

      Thank you Evelyn! THIS BOOK IS SO GOOD and I’m so glad it’s getting the attention it deserves! Have you read this nightmare fuel yet?!

  2. Katie

    June 23, 2020 at 6:51 AM

    This book sounds so fabulous, but horror is definitely NOT for me. Dracula gave me nightmares, that’s how much of a wuss I am. To bad, it sounds like I’m really missing out.

    1. Kal

      September 19, 2020 at 8:43 PM

      Yeaaa… if Dracula gave you nightmares, you need to avoid this one Katie. This book freaked ME out, and I am tough to scare! It’s a great read and I think Silvia’s writing is incredible, so maybe you can check out Gods of Jade and Shadow or Untamed Shore instead?

  3. Jenna @ Falling Letters

    June 27, 2020 at 3:08 PM

    I added this book to my TBR some time ago. Now that I’m reading reviews highlighting how creepy it is, I think I need to prioritize reading it over the summer.

    1. Kal

      September 19, 2020 at 8:45 PM

      Haha yea this is definitely creepy in the best of ways. I hope you enjoyed it if you’ve read it already!

  4. Veronika @ Wordy and Whimsical

    June 28, 2020 at 12:27 PM

    I really love Gothic novels, and I’ve been wanting to read something by Silvia Moreno Garcia for the longest time, so I’m incredibly excited for this novel! I’m glad to hear you enjoyed it, and I love how creepy this sounds. Great review! 🙂

    1. Kal

      September 19, 2020 at 8:46 PM

      IT IS SO GOOD! It’s been like 3 months and I’m still thinking about it. I own two of her other novels and really need to get around to reading them asap. I hope you enjoy(ed) this one as much as I did!

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  6. Luxe

    July 8, 2020 at 10:18 AM

    I am sooo excited for this one since its release but haven’t had the chance to get it for myself. I’ve heard nothing but great things about Mexican Gothic and your fantastic review just builds up my excitement even more! ✨

    1. Kal

      September 19, 2020 at 8:54 PM

      Ahhh, thank you and I hope you love the book as much as I do!

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  9. Bec @ bec&books

    July 15, 2020 at 6:02 PM

    “I love how time and reality slowly begin to blur.” UGH how did I not know this is what I need?! Seriously debating picking up my audiobook copy next (even though I have so many others I should be prioritizing). Gorgeous review.

    1. Kal

      September 19, 2020 at 9:16 PM

      YOU NEED THIS! I hope you’ve read it already since it’s been two months since you left this comment (sorry!), but if you haven’t PLEASE DO! Thanks so much for your comment, Bec.

  10. lauren

    July 17, 2020 at 1:32 PM

    aww man absolutely love this review + the content warnings aaaa they just make me wanna pick it up asap but i gotta be goood w review copies first

    1. Kal

      September 19, 2020 at 9:18 PM

      this book is a horrific and nightmare delight and i hope you read & love it soon. perfect for spooky season if you haven’t read it yet.

  11. Meaghan

    July 24, 2020 at 6:58 PM

    Brb, adding this one to my stack of “books that will probably scare me because I’m a chicken but I’m gonna go read it anyway!”

    Seriously, I’m no good with horror but love gothic horror books all the same, and this one sounds SO GOOD. Plus I think it was you and Kate I saw yelling “FUCK MUSHROOMS” on Twitter about this book and…I’ve just gotta know, even if I’m gonna regret it lmao.

    1. Kal

      September 19, 2020 at 9:54 PM

      That stack is perfect for Spooky Season, doitdoitdoit! The atmosphere is so good and I swear the book has Crimson Peak vibes. I can’t wait for YOU to also scream”FUCK MUSHROOMS”

  12. Reg

    September 22, 2020 at 6:12 AM

    I’m so happy to see you ended up enjoying this so much. I am bummed but am excited to check out other books by this author.
    I also have been meaning to watch Crimson Peak. I am hoping to pick it up from the library next month to watch it for spooky season. I am interested to see what I think since you said this is very similar to that movie.

    1. Kal

      September 22, 2020 at 12:34 PM

      I own both Gods of Jade & Shadow and Untamed Shore, so let me know if you want to try a buddy read with one of those. GoJaS is YA and US is adult. I love Crimson Peak for some reason, it’s just so aesthetically pleasing, so I’m looking forward to hearing your thoughts!

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