Hurricane season: Fernanda Melchor

Hurricane season

Hurricane season

Hurricane season is a fast-paced black novel written by the Mexican journalist and author Fernanda Melchor. The work was published by the Random House imprint in 2017. Since its first release, the book has been met with acclaim from critics and most readers who have come across it, even going so far as to win the International Prize for Literature in 2019.

One of the most common adjectives that is usually awarded to Hurricane season it is “stormy”. This word is not found on the lips of readers by chance, because the work deserves it. Fernanda Melchor's novel revolves around aberrational events that are not easily digested. Likewise, its structure, narrative style and characters make it a real race.

Synopsis of Hurricane season

The find

The plot of Hurricane season begins when a group of children find the body of a woman floating in an irrigation canal. The body, which lies in the murky waters, belonged to someone who was nicknamed The Witch, a lady as mysterious as she was disowned by the inhabitants of La Matosa. It is a fictitious town, but with landscapes, situations, vocabulary and characters very similar to those that could be found in Veracruz, Mexico.

The gnawed cabin of La Bruja used to be a regular meeting place for the women of La Matosa. In her, the sorceress helped her fellow citizens get rid of children they did not want born, to create love concoctions to trap their men, to cure illnesses and other incidents. All these, very popular customs in some rural municipalities of the United Mexican States.


From that moment on, a series of investigations begin to be carried out to discover who was guilty of the murder. The results of the investigations are good, since shortly after the death of The Witch, the clues lead the detectives to several suspects.

Specific, those linked to the crime are a group of young people, who —according to a village neighbor— fled from the deceased's hut with a bundle that resembled a human body. The same circumstances prompt the characters to tell their own stories.

A novel of characters

More than a thriller or a novel, Hurricane season It's a character book. Each of the voices involved with The Witch has something to say, all of them carrying their own burdens, sins and longings.

La Matosa is not a good place to grow, since it is plagued with violence, discrimination, drugs, pornography, sex at a very young age and an intricate power game in which only the most influential men win.

in said town only the strongest survive, and, many times, to acquire that level of strength it is necessary to become a predator, always on the lookout for the weakest victims, constantly present before the challenging looks of the rebels.

In this context, what Fernanda Melchor has to tell is not easy to read, by its shape and by its background. Hurricane season exposes the most terrible side of human beings, but also their light.

Structure of the work

In the same way that it happens with sixteen notes, by Risto Mejide, The structure imposed by Fernanda Melchor is intrinsically related to the enjoyment of reading it. The author proposes blocks of text without separation by full stop.

Within the novel there are no paragraphs —More than in the seventh chapter, and this, for very specific reasons. There are also no pauses beyond a simple point and followed. Delving into this book is running a dizzying marathon towards a story that leaves no room for rest.

Some readers have claimed that it is precisely this structure that has prevented their full enjoyment of the novel, others, for their part, claim the exact opposite. And yes: what exists within Hurricane season invites speed, the consequent capsizing. In the work you can find the darkest eroticism, the ambivalence between abandonment and beauty embodied in a few characters, who, desperate, demand a way out.

Fernanda Melchor's narrative style in Hurricane season

The dialogues, internal monologues and flashbacks used in Hurricane season they are close to the type of language that usually characterizes the poorest communities of any country. The suburbs are inhabited by vulgar interlocutors, without a filter, with rapid, rude and clumsy speech.

But isn't this what is expected of a town blackened by the poverty of its people? The author's narrative style is totally congruent with the plot that develops in his work.

The only pause that occurs in the reading of Hurricane season exists when a new chapter begins. In each of them, the writer focuses on giving voice to the characters that were once related to The Witch.

Through these it is possible to learn a little more about this enigmatic figure, but it is also plausible to get to the bottom of the hearts of each person who inhabits La Matosa, and the reason for their actions. No one is safe, no one is blameless, and everyone is grey.

About the author, Fernanda Melchor Pinto

Fernanda Melchor

Fernanda Melchor

Fernanda Melchor Pinto was born in 1982, in Boca del Río, State of Veracruz, Mexico. He did a degree in journalism from the University of Veracruz. After graduating, he collaborated with various media outlets, including: Excelsior, Replicating, The Word and the Man, weekly millennium, Contemporary Mexican Literature Magazine, The Diplomatic World, Vanity Fair Latin America y The evil-thinker.

In addition to his main career, The author teaches Aesthetics and Art classes at the Meritorious Autonomous University of Puebla. Fernanda Melchor rose to fame after the publication of her first two books. Her third work made her the recipient of the International Booker Prize, in 2020, in addition to other recognitions for her work.

Other books by Fernanda Melchor


  • False hare (2013);
  • Paradais (2021)


  • Here is not Miami (2013)

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