Hiya folx it’s Jocelyn. Welcome back to
yogi with a book and today we are talking Silvia Moreno-Garcia. So if
you’ve been on my channel for any amount of time, you’ve probably heard me say her
name, but Silvia Moreno-Garcia is a Mexican-Canadian author who I absolutely adore Since it is the middle of Latinx
Heritage Month, one of the things I wanted to do was sort of deep dive into
an author and Silvia Moreno-Garcia perfectly fits that list because I’ve
read all of her work that I can get a hold of at this point, I own all of her
novels and her one short story, and while I and some of my friends are such big
fans, it seems that the majority of the reading world still doesn’t appreciate
her the way they should. So this video is just me trying to talk about why I think
you need to be reading Silvia Moreno-Garcia I also did a blog post with my
friend Alicia whose blog is a kernel of nonsense and we did it for our Latinx
Book Club blog so I will also be linking that down below but I realized
even after our conversation that I had so many more things I wanted to say and
more arguments that I wanted to make So while this isn’t an exhaustive list by
any means, consider this me officially begging you to read Silvia Moreno-Garcia.
So right off the bat, a reason you need to be reading her is because there’s a
little bit of something for every SFF reader.
Silvia Moreno-Garcia plays with both science fiction and fantasy in every way
you can imagine. She is the definition of a speculative writer and her range is
just incredible. Her debut novel was Signal to Noise and this is a magical
realism book set in Mexico. It is a dual timeline following a girl named Mercedes
in both 1988 and 2009 when she comes back to the city for her father’s
funeral. In here the magic that Meche and her friends play with is gained by
playing different records and each song has a different magical property. Her
next book was Certain Dark Things and this is described as a vampire noir. We
once again returned to Mexico, except this time we are following a human
named Rodrigo and an Aztec vampire named Atl. She is on the run from a white
European vampire who just recently murdered her entire family and is out to
finish her off. If you like vampires and noirs, you should already pick this one
up, but note that it is a little bit harder to find because it is out of
print Then there’s The Beautiful Ones, which is
actually the first one of hers that is not set in Mexico. It’s inspired by the
Belle Epoque era and it’s a fantasy of manners. Here we follow mostly the love
story of Nina and Hector who both have telekinetic powers and become
intertwined because of Valerie. Valerie and Hector were once in love but she
left him for a rich man so that she could be comfortable and that man is Nina’s
cousin. Hector comes back into town and wants nothing more than to get back with
Valerie and to do that he needs to get back at her. And if you like quiet
historical fiction novels, this one should absolutely be your pick, but again
this is sadly out of print. Then there’s her novella Prime Meridian. Once again
we’re back in Mexico and this time we are following Amelia. Amelia has a rather
lonely and lonesome life and all she wanted to do was make it to a Mars
colony one day. Instead she’s 20-something years old,
trapped in Mexico City, and completely unhappy with her life. One of the only
things that actually does bring her joy is spending time with an elderly retired
movie star. There are some intermittent scenes [in] here of said star’s films that
mostly feature Mars, and by the end you’ll be rooting for Amelia too. And
finally we have Gods of Jade and Shadow which just came out this July. And this
is a mythology based fantasy. This is set in 1920s Mexico and we follow Casiopea,
who’s in a little bit of a Cinderella situation. Because of how disgraceful her
family finds her and her mother, she finds herself at the mercy of her vile
male relatives, specifically her grandfather and her cousin Martín. One
day when she opens her grandfather’s chest, she accidentally sets forth the
Maya god of death Hun-Kamé and readily agrees to go on the journey with him to
collect the rest of his missing body parts. Her cousin Martín also forms an
alliance with Hun-Kamé’s brother who pursue them in order to re-trap him. To
all my mythology fans out there: if you haven’t picked this one up
yet, you are doing yourself a disservice We have magical realism. we have urban
fantasy, historical fantasy, light sci-fi, mythological fantasy – what more could you want? She also crafts characters unlike any
author I’ve seen before While I’m always drawn in by the
synopses it’s the characters that really keep me going through Silvia Moreno-
Garcia’s books. All of them are complex and dynamic and not only our
protagonists, but our antagonists as well I don’t know about you, but I happen to
generally love villains and some of my favorite villains have been in Silvia
Moreno-Garcia’s work. She is able to so easily hone in on things that are
universal and sometimes grotesque and I don’t know how she does it, but it
is fantastic. The relationships between our antagonists and protagonists in
every book is different and new and exciting and still just as believable as
the next. Another thing I know I can look forward to when I pick up one of Silvia
Moreno-Garcia’s books is her scathing social commentary. Honestly the first
time I read Certain Dark Things I was laughing out loud in parts. In there she
goes really hard on gentrification especially, and the villain is absolutely
white toxic masculinity personified. And with Gods of Jade and Shadow, she takes a
lot of care talking about colorism through Casiopea, who is darker than
the rest of her family and treated poorly because of that. She
has so many amazing themes and topics within her work and I don’t see enough
authors going as deep or as hard as she does. Also I know a lot of people who
aren’t big SFF fans are a little bit intimidated by how big some of these SFF
series can be. Well, good news! Silvia Moreno-Garcia pretty much
exclusively writes standalones. She also knows how to write an ending. This might
seem like an odd reason to put in here, but trust me, not every author knows how
to end a book. And while I haven’t always loved her endings, they always make sense
for the story that she’s written Sometimes they’re hopeful, a lot of times
they’re bittersweet, and more often than not they’re also a
little bit ambiguous. One thing I really appreciate are authors who understand
their characters and their world enough to not just give fanservice because they
know people are going to want that Silvia Moreno-Garcia I think really
understands her work and where it’s coming from and she delivers time and
time again with endings that just work And going off of that, my final reason
that you should be picking up her books is because she is so very consistent.
I’ve had different relationships with all of her books. I’ve liked them in
varied ways and different things from each of them as well, but one thing
that’s true for all of them is that I enjoy her writing. I enjoy her work. I
enjoy her plots. I enjoy her characters And even if it isn’t a five-star story,
she’s never created something that’s absolutely trash. Books are a crapshoot
each and every time you pick them up, but I have never ever been failed by a
Silvia Moreno-Garcia book. So there you are, just a quick, short, desperate video
to hopefully get people talking about this author more. I would really love to
see other people picking up her things and if you’ve read any of her books,
please tell me which ones down below and how you got on with them. I hope I’ve
piqued your interest at least a little bit and maybe you’ll consider following
her on Twitter or looking more into some of her work that you can get now. Again,
Signal to Noise and Gods of Jade and Shadow are going to be the easiest to
find because they are the most readily available, but Certain Dark Things is
another one that I absolutely adore, so I hope if you can get your hands on that
you’ll consider picking up that one too Not to mention there’s a book to look
forward to next year. Her very first thriller is going to be coming out and
that is called Untamed Shore. So now’s your chance to catch up with all of her
work before the next one comes out But that is going to be it for me today.
Thank you all so much for watching my video. I hope my passion for Silvia
Moreno-Garcia makes at least a few of you curious to pick up some of her stuff.
But even if it doesn’t, I’ll be back with another video shortly. Bye


  1. I am sure that at some point I knew that Gods of Jade & Shadow was the same author as Signal To Noise but somehow my brain quietly forgot this information? I adored Signal To Noise, though. I just requested Gods of Jade & Shadow at my library so hopefully I'll get to that one sooooon.

  2. Yes! As soon as she said that The Beautiful Ones was out of print, I ordered it because I want to read all of her books.

  3. Silvia Moreno-Garcia is now one of my favorite authors! I was anticipating GoJaS so I bought Certain Dark Things and The Beautiful Ones from BookOutlet. I loved all three of those stories so much. I totally agree that she writes good endings even if some are bittersweet. I haven’t read Signal to Noise or Prime Meridian yet because the synopsis didn’t appeal to me, but after your description of them I feel like I’ll also love them (so I better get on that 😂)!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *