Mid-Columbia Libraries is proud to welcome New York Times bestselling novelist Silvia Moreno-Garcia on October 13 at 7pm at the Columbia Basin College Gjerde Center for our annual Mid-Columbia Reads literary festival! Prepare for her visit by reading or listening to one of these popular titles. Free copies are available at all branches, while supplies last, or borrow a book from our collection.

The Daughter of Doctor Moreau

Basing her title on The Island of Dr. Moreau by H.G. Wells, Moreno-Garcia sets her latest novel in the Yucatan Peninsula. The story follows the daughter of Dr. Moreau, Carlota. Carlota lives in a luxurious estate safe and unaware of the strife outside her and her father’s isolated world. Surrounded by creatures created and controlled by her father, she lives a quiet life. But when the son of her father’s patron, Eduardo Lizalde, unexpectedly arrives on the island his careless actions set off a dangerous chain reaction.

Velvet Was the Night

Hundreds of students were killed while protesting in Mexico in 1971 in an effort to quash communism. What ensued throughout the decade was an attack on any Mexican dissenters, a period referred to as the Mexican Dirty War. Music that was critical of the government was illegal. Any musical gatherings were outlawed. In this political and unstable environment, we find three very different young people. Maite is a secretary doing her best to ignore the world around her, instead spending her time absorbed in the romance comic books she enjoys. But when her neighbor disappears, she feels compelled to try to find her. Elvis is a fighter, and it’s his job to find Maite’s neighbor. And, finally, Leanora, the neighbor and target, is an art student and activist whose activities have gotten her in trouble. In the attempt to find out the truth of Leanora’s disappearance, Maite and Elvis encounter hitmen, government agents, and Russian spies, and learn how cheap human life can be in the Mexico of the 1970s.

Mexican Gothic

In this gothic horror tale, Noemi Taboada receives a letter from her cousin asking someone to come help her. Newly married and living an isolated life in a decaying mansion called High House, her cousin seems to be ill and her husband is no help. Noemi is a glamorous debutante more than she is a caretaker or rescuer, but she is strong and has a sense of adventure. When she arrives, she finds the husband strange, his father creepy in all the creepiest ways, and his mother peculiar. The only one in the house who seems sensible is the cousin, but he seems unable or unwilling to help Noemi figure out what is going on in the house. While all the people in the house are disturbing, the house itself is causing her violent nightmares and may ultimately be what makes it impossible for her to get away.

Gods of Jade and Shadow

In this fairytale inspired by Mexican folklore, we meet Casiopea, a young woman who keeps house for her wealthy grandfather. When she finds an unusual box in her grandfather's room and opens it, she accidentally frees the spirit of the Mayan god of death. Instead of just saying thank you and going on his way, the spirit requests her help recovering his throne from the brother that stole it from him. While Casiopea may have longed for adventure that would take her out of her small Mexican village, this journey may be more than she bargained for.

The Beautiful Ones

Romance and magic combine in The Beautiful Ones. Nina is coming out and hopes to find a husband during the season. Being from an upper-class family should help, but Nina has one problem that derails her right from the start: she is unable to control her telekinesis. When Hector Auvray — an entertainer and fellow telekinetic — arrives in town, Nina is smitten, and Hector offers to help her control her power. As Nina falls for Hector, secrets are revealed and she must deal with betrayal, scandal, and passion.

If you enjoy titles by Silvia Moreno-Garcia, you may also enjoy the following authors:

  • P. Djeli Clark
  • Gwendolyn Kiste
  • Christopher Buehlman

Sarah Johnson is a collection librarian at Mid-Columbia Libraries. She reads more than 120 books a year. In her free time, she teaches fitness classes, gardens, and brews kombucha.