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Gods of Jade and Shadow

Narrated by: Yetta Gottesman
Length: 11 hrs and 4 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (77 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The Mayan god of death sends a young woman on a harrowing, life-changing journey in this dark, one-of-a-kind fairy tale inspired by Mexican folklore.

“Simultaneously heartbreaking and heart-mending, Gods of Jade and Shadow is a wondrous and magical tale about choosing our own path.” (Kevin Hearne, New York Times best-selling author of The Iron Druid Chronicles)

The Jazz Age is in full swing, but Casiopea Tun is too busy cleaning the floors of her wealthy grandfather’s house to listen to any fast tunes. Nevertheless, she dreams of a life far from her dusty small town in southern Mexico. A life she can call her own. 

Yet this new life seems as distant as the stars, until the day she finds a curious wooden box in her grandfather’s room. She opens it - and accidentally frees the spirit of the Mayan god of death, who requests her help in recovering his throne from his treacherous brother. Failure will mean Casiopea’s demise, but success could make her dreams come true.

In the company of the strangely alluring god and armed with her wits, Casiopea begins an adventure that will take her on a cross-country odyssey from the jungles of Yucatán to the bright lights of Mexico City - and deep into the darkness of the Mayan underworld.
 

Advance praise for Gods of Jade and Shadow:

“A magical novel of duality, tradition, and change...Moreno-Garcia’s seamless blend of mythology and history provides a ripe setting for Casiopea’s stellar journey of self-discovery, which culminates in a dramatic denouement. Readers will gladly immerse themselves in Moreno-Garcia’s rich and complex tale of desperate hopes and complicated relationships.” (Publishers Weekly, starred review)

“Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s prose is like the best kind of fairy tale - dark, enchanting, and makes you wish that you could live within its pages. Casiopea’s journey belongs on every bookshelf.” (Zoraida Córdova, award-winning author of Labyrinth Lost

“Set in a lushly rendered and gorgeous world, this is historical fantasy at its best: a fresh, feminist coming-of-age tale that lets the ancient and the new meld and clash, a tale you can't put down.” (S. A. Chakraborty, author of The City of Brass and The Kingdom of Copper)

©2019 Silvia Moreno-Garcia (P)2019 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

“Snappy dialog, stellar worldbuilding, lyrical prose, and a slow-burn romance make this a standout.... Purchase where Naomi Novik, Nnedi Okorafor, and N. K. Jemisin are popular.” (Library Journal, starred review)
 

“A vibrant story of grit, giddiness, and glory with a protagonist whose personality burns bright as a star. Casiopea Tun will capture your heart and draw you into a jewel-toned world of mythmaking and jazz music.” (Lara Elena Donnelly, author of the Amberlough Dossier trilogy)

“A beautiful work that will draw you in and keep you transfixed and reading far too late. It blends the ‘real’ and the mythic seamlessly, and the clear-sighted heroine is a joy to read about. It’s the sort of book that will leave you with beautiful afterimages for weeks to follow, and going back to reread favorite sections.” (Genevieve Cogman, author of the Invisible Library series)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

I can’t finish this

The performance is terrible. It’s like a reluctant high school student was chosen to read aloud. It’s stilted and devoid of all emotion and personality. Are there different characters speaking? I don’t know, maybe. The narrator barely changes her voice in a single conversation. Sentences aren’t read with normal inflection, which is confusing. This isn’t a textbook. Why does it sound like one. Seems a decent story, too.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Expected much more

I just kept waiting for this to be over. I increased the speed to 2.5 to finish faster. I listen to tons of books but books like this make my mind wander not keeping my attention very well. I listened to the whole book but would not recommend or listen to it again. I'm giving it a 3 because it wasn't really bad but wasn't really good either.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Room for improvement

The story was decent. It felt to me a little uneven. Dialogue of struck me as anachronistic. The narration was reminiscent of an adolescent doing a “cold-read aloud”. Awkward inflection and odd phrasing detracted from what might have been an entertaining novel.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Fun book but a bit goofy...

I enjoyed the story although I was not expecting a teenage type romance novel.. Was thinking there would be more story line about the mythologies of Mexico.. Still... Pretty good

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Narrator was not a good fit

The narrator was not a good fit for this story. Not enough emotion or inflection. Also no difference between the characters voices. But the story was enjoyable.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

LOVED this tale!! Gorgeous, vivid and bittersweet.

So glad they got a Spanish speaker for the audiobook. In the beginning, you couldn't really tell who was speaking because the narrator did not change the inflection of her voice, but I think she did great as the main character and she clearly knew the language, which is imperative when you have so much Spanish in a tale like this.

The story itself was wonderful, very much a modern day fairy tale with Mexican folklore. Loved it so much, very proud to see my such a wonderful book representing my culture!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • JS
  • 08-09-19

Great Storytelling

The narrator is slow to start, but once she gets into the story she is fantastic!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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excellent

very enjoyable fascinating, it felt like a fantasy, a myth, and a cautionary tale. and yet love rang true changing the entire course of lives, gods and forgiveness. I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this complex twisting tail

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    5 out of 5 stars

I love a good parable

Plucky teen girl meets Mayan death god for travel and adventure. What's not to like?

0 of 1 people found this review helpful