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!
About Mexican Gothic
Publisher: Del Rey | Release Date: June 30, 2020 | Pages: 352
Genre: Adult, Gothic Horror | Format: eARC | Source: Publisher via Netgalley
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
✨ 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?
Let’s go on another adventure together!