Cameron Smyth: Explore a new world with One Story One City

Cameron Smyth

This is always an exciting time for the Santa Clarita Public Library! The annual One Story One City program is just around the corner, with immersive events and programming coming in March. I am pleased to share that this year’s selected book is “Gods of Jade and Shadow” by award-winning author Silvia Moreno-Garcia. Santa Clarita community members are invited to participate in One Story One City, which promotes reading and encourages discussion within our community.

“Gods of Jade and Shadow” is set in 1920s Mexico and draws on inspiration from Mexican folklore. The book tells the story of Casiopea Tun, a woman who dreams of escaping her traditional life and longs for exciting new adventures. After stumbling upon her grandfather’s secret box, Casiopea unknowingly releases the Mayan God of Death, Hun-Kam, who takes her on the adventure of a lifetime. Casiopea journeys through Mexico to the Mayan underworld, Xibalba, to help Hun-Kam recover his throne and along the way finds her place in the world.

One Story One City is a wonderful opportunity to indulge in a good read and engage in discussions hosted at Santa Clarita Public Library branches. It is a unique program that allows community members to come together and dive deeper into the story using a book club format, along with interactive programming and events. By reading and experiencing one story at the same time, we can form connections with fellow community members, learn about another culture and create an understanding that extends beyond the book. Due to some topics covered in the book, please note it is recommended for adults and not suitable for readers under the age of 16.

“Gods of Jade and Shadow,” by Silvia Moreno-Garcia, is this year’s selection for the Santa Clarita Public Library’s One Story One City program. Courtesy photo

Have you ever wondered how authors craft their fantastical stories? You’ll have the opportunity to hear from the author of “Gods of Jade and Shadow” herself! Silvia Moreno-Garcia will visit the Newhall Family Theatre on Saturday, March 7, at 11 a.m. to talk about her writing process and share where she finds her inspiration.

On top of this event where you’ll get to hear from the book’s author, there will be a variety of other book-themed programming to enjoy. One such performance in theme with “Gods of Jade and Shadow” will take place on March 27, as part of the city’s new SCENES Music Series. The show at The MAIN in Old Town Newhall will feature a Flamenco dancing performance. For more details about this event, please visit

Also in the events lineup is a lecture about Mayan influence on architecture, a lecture about 1920s fashion, Ballet Folklorico performances at each Santa Clarita Public Library branch and an art exhibit in the First Floor Gallery at City Hall centered on themes of romantic fantasy and Mayan gods and mythology from the book. For more details about these special events, please visit

March will be here before we know it, so make sure to head to your local Santa Clarita Public Library branch now to check out a copy of the book! Or, you can conveniently access the e-version of the book at by logging in with your library card.

Along with thousands of books to explore, the Santa Clarita Public Library is proud to offer enriching arts and culture programming for residents of all ages. I invite you to visit our local libraries and utilize all of the resources they have to offer. To learn more about this year’s One Story One City program, visit

Mayor Cameron Smyth is a member of the Santa Clarita City Council and can be reached at [email protected].

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