Season of the Swamp: A Novel By Yuri Herrera Cover Image
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A major new novel set in nineteenth-century New Orleans by the author of Signs Preceding the End of the World

New Orleans, 1853. A young exile named Benito Juárez disembarks at a fetid port city at the edge of a swamp. Years later, he will become the first indigenous head of state in the postcolonial Americas, but now he is as anonymous and invisible as any other migrant to the roiling and alluring city of New Orleans.

Accompanied by a small group of fellow exiles who plot their return and hoped-for victory over the Mexican dictatorship, Juárez immerses himself in the city, which absorbs him like a sponge. He and his compatriots work odd jobs, suffer through the heat of a southern summer, fall victim to the cons and confusions of a strange young nation, succumb to the hallucinations of yellow fever, and fall in love with the music and food all around them. But unavoidable, too, is the grotesque traffic in human beings they witness as they try to shape their future.

Though the historical archive is silent about the eighteen months Juárez spent in New Orleans, Yuri Herrera imagines how Juárez’s time there prepared him for what was to come. With the extraordinary linguistic play and love of popular forms that have characterized all of Herrera’s fiction, Season of the Swamp is a magnificent work of speculative history, a love letter to the city of New Orleans and its polyglot culture, and a cautionary statement that informs our understanding of the world we live in.

Praise For…

“Reading Ten Planets . . . requires not only suspension of disbelief but surrender of control. Both are challenging; both are worth it. Nobody writes like Yuri Herrera, and it would be a shame not to travel with him as far as his imagination can go.”—Lily Meyer,

“The always thrilling and always remarkable Yuri Herrera has outdone himself here: Reading Season of the Swamp is like being thrown into deep water only to open your eyes and find a haunting and haunted world, one full of magic and beauty, exiles and outsiders, longing and song. I didn’t want to surface—here I am still, in its great, brilliant light. ”—Paul Yoon, author of The Hive and the Honey

“Mesmerizing . . . as glorious and messy as the best New Orleans gumbo. . . . It’s a triumph.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review

Product Details
ISBN: 9781644453070
ISBN-10: 164445307X
Publisher: Graywolf Press
Publication Date: October 1st, 2024
Pages: 160
Language: English