Watch Silvia Moreno-Garcia at the L.A. Times Book Club
Novelist Silvia Moreno-Garciajoined the L.A. Times Book Club on Sept. 27 to discuss “The Daughter of Doctor Moreau.”
Born in Mexico and now living in Vancouver, Moreno-Garcia has been evolving across genres for years, moving with ease among fantasy, mystery, science fiction, horror and noir stories.
President Obama included her novel, “Velvet Was the Night,” a recent L.A. Times Book Prize finalist, on his 2022 summer reading list. She is also the author of “Mexican Gothic” and “Gods of Jade and Shadow.”
“The fictions of Silvia Moreno-Garcia abound in shapeshifters. And they are central to her latest novel, ‘The Daughter of Doctor Moreau,’ which reframes the classic H.G. Wells story of terrifying human-animal hybrids as a thrilling and romantic anticolonial adventure set in the Yucatán Peninsula,” says reviewer Paula L. Woods.
“If you read her work as deeply as it deserves to be read — beyond its page-turning thrills … you’ll see that what lies beneath is even more astonishing: a perspective on Mexican history as broad and inclusive as any you’re likely to see in fiction — never mind a bestseller list.”
In a new essay for The Times, Moreno-Garcia says she switches genres so often to find a fresh focus every time out.
“You also could chalk up this desire to straddle categories to two things at once. I spent my early childhood growing up in the Mexico-United States border zone in Baja California,” she says. “My parents filled our home with eclectic books. They were hoarders in many ways, avid readers who didn’t care what shelf something sat on. I learned to read in Spanish and in English because they had books in both languages, and I was as likely to bump into award-winning Mexican writers, French poets or early 20th century American pulp fiction in the chaotic piles of books that mushroomed in every corner of our messy home.
“At any rate, I grew up to become someone who wants to be many things, perhaps everything, all at once.”
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