East Austin Book Club

Discussing books together, on the third Monday of every month at Native Hostel & Bar on Zoom, 7pm sharp

Hurricane Season

by Fernanda Melchor

Cover artwork for Hurricane Season

The Witch is dead. And the discovery of her corpse—by a group of children playing near the irrigation canals—propels the whole village into an investigation of how and why this murder occurred. Rumors and suspicions spread. As the novel unfolds in a dazzling linguistic torrent, with each unreliable narrator lingering details, new acts of depravity or brutality, Melchor extracts some tiny shred of humanity from these characters that most would write off as utterly irredeemable, forming a lasting portrait of a damned Mexican village. Like Roberto Bolaño’s 2666 or Faulkner’s greatest novels, Hurricane Season takes place in a world filled with mythology and violence—real violence, the kind that seeps into the soil, poisoning everything around: it’s a world that becomes more terrifying and more terrifyingly real the deeper you explore it.

Discussion questions

  • Which narrative did you enjoy the most or gain the most from and why?
  • What are specific examples of complicated relationships and how did you feel about them?
  • How are the characters struggling with definitions of sexuality? How did this contribute to the violence?
  • What critiques about society was the author making? Where was she effective and where was she not?
  • Did you find the narratives easy to differentiate?
  • What did you like about the form of the novel? What was challenging about it?