Review – Mexican Gothic

Mexican Gothic – Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Wow, what a read.  Not what I was expecting at all, another book that I went into blind with no preconceived ideas, I just knew I desperately wanted to read it and what a read it was.

Atmospheric, historical, lyrical, dark, intense.  They are just a few words that grab me when I try and work out how to describe Mexican Gothic.  Very much a slow burn yet perfectly paced.

Noemi, the beautiful and vibrant socialite of a wealthy Mexican family in the 1950’s is asked by her father to visit her cousin Catalina after they receive a troubling letter from her.  The letter is disturbing, filled with the ramblings of what could only be described as a mad woman. 

Catalina has been living in High Place since recently marrying her husband Virgil.  A hauntingly eerie mansion in the mountains of El Triunfo Mexico. Although irritated at having to make the trek, Noemi who is extremely fond of her cousin, agrees to visit and find out for herself what is ailing Catalina. 

As soon as she arrives at High Place Noemi instantly feels ill at ease in the house.  Used to a life full of glamour and fun she struggles to adjust to the dark and dreary mansion.  No warmth, no light and a house filled with a hauntingly eerie silence. 

Barely able to spend more than five minutes alone with Catalina away from the prying eyes and ears of Virgil’s family, Noemi soon starts to worry about what is hidden within the walls.  Catalina almost seems a prisoner of the house.  What should she make of her illness?  What are the family hiding?

I could rave on and on about this book and the hauntingly gothic tale that is woven but I can’t for fear of giving anything away.  It is vivid and descriptive and as this tale unfolds it becomes more and more frightening until you realise you have been holding your breath.  Scenes that make your stomach turn yet that feeling that you can’t look away. 

The one thing I will say, I will certainly never feel the same way about mushrooms ever again.

*****