The Mexican board game of Lotería is a game of chance. It is similar to our American bingo. However, in Lotería instead of matching up numbers on a game board, players match up images. There are 54 cards in the Lotería game, and for this short story collection you will find one unique story per card based on a Latin American myth, folklore, superstition, or belief – with a slant towards the paranormal and horrific. In this deck of cards you will find murderers, ghosts, goblins and ghouls. This collection features creatures and monsters, vampires and werewolves and many of these legends existed in the Americas long before their European counterparts. Many of these stories have been passed over time throughout the Americas, and many have been passed via word of mouth, just like the tales the Brothers Grimm collected. These are indeed fairy tales, but with a much more terrible little slant.
When I first read the title of the book I couldn’t help but smile because it brought back child hood memories. Then I remembered that I had the game in my closet but ever since I read a few stories, I don’t think I will ever look at it the same. There were some sections that were horrifying and some that grew in suspense but didn’t deliver. I was disappointed with how the tale of Chupacabra was told because it is a truly terrifying story, some of my family members still cringe at the thought of it. Loteria should not be read in one sitting. Let the horror sink in and then continue or else you won’t be scared anymore. It is similar to oral tales, if someone keeps trying to spook you then you’ll eventually get bored. I am a big fan of myths and I found some of the stories very interesting because they are told in different ways in other countries. It makes me wonder if at some point the myths were a reality. This is a wonderful collection. Now I can’t wait to round up a group and play Loteria.