November 19, 2020

Latinx Lit

Books by diverse authors are making some waves this year. Finally! One of the groups of authors that has long been under-published is Latinx folks. Sure the big name authors like Allende and Garcia-Marquez could always get on book lists, but new authors have historically been ignored. Not anymore. Here is a list of Latinx authors that are getting some good press and releasing awesome books.

Silvia Moreno Garcia - Most recently, she released Mexican Gothic which is a haunted house story set in 1950s Mexico. I'm also pretty excited about one of her older books called Gods of Jade and Shadow, set in the 1920s. Moreno-Garcia has at least 10 titles under her belt.

Carmen Maria Machado - Much like Moreno-Garcia, Machado's books tend toward the dark and twisty side of reality with a large helping of magical realism. She also had a hand in creating a comics series called The Low, Low Woods that was released in a trade compilation this year.

Meg Medina - She writes books for children and teens and I loved the two I've read. One was set during the Summer of Sam in NYC in 1977, with rolling black outs. The other I've read was set in current day, about a girl who is bullied by a girl because she's sexier (not on purpose). The girls are strong and deal with a bunch of crap that is/was typical for Hispanic girls at the time of the book.

Daniel Jose Older - Better get a man on this list. Once again, he is an author for teens and kids, but his works include more magical realism. His next series will be a sci-fi situation, so he's stretching his literary muscles. The one I read was about a girl in the Bronx whose art came to life and she has to use it to stop a Latin Gang and some paranormal issues.

Zoraida Cordova - Cordova writes both adult and YA books. She has done fantasy, romance, nonfiction, and a series of Star Wars novels. My favorite is the Brooklyn Brujas series about some witches, but I have a new one on my shelf that is a political fantasy novel for young adults.

So there you have 5 Latinx authors that are gaining steam this year. I see that most of them are YA authors which makes sense. I feel like YA publishers are more willing to "take risks" on diverse authors because YA readers are more interested in reading them. They tend to seek out these authors and books with characters that look different from what they're used to.