Silver Nitrate by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

I recently finished Silver Nitrate, the latest novel by one of my favorite horror (or perhaps horror-adjacent) authors, Silvia Moreno-Garcia*. This one was set in the early 90s in Mexico City and involved an audio engineer getting mixed up in the occult and dark magics started by a possibly Nazi occultist film-maker a few decades back.

What I love about this author’s work is how it’s not written to exoticize Mexico for English-speaking audiences. There’s so much that this culture has in common with ours, and Moreno-Garcia doesn’t de-emphasize this. And yet, the setting is interesting and different enough that it satisfies my desire for novel experiences.

As usual, the protagonist is a prickly, awesome woman who I would enjoy having as a friend. The supernatural elements are more overt than I expected, after having read Velvet Was the Night most recently, which was more of a crime noir than anything else. That said, it was a welcome return to the subjects that first captured my attention with Signal to Noise.

If any of that sounds up your alley, I highly recommend giving this one a read. It kept my attention even in this time of atomized attention spans, which is really saying something.

*Disclaimer: I did Silvia’s website a few years back.

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