by Juliana Delgado Lopera
Feminist Press. 283 pages, $17.95
“BUENOS DÍAS, mi reina.” So begins Juliana Delgado Lopera’s vibrant, voice-driven novel Fiebre Tropical, whose protagonist, Francisca, addresses the narrative to “su reina,” her queen, the Jesus-loving daughter of a preacher, Carmen. In this way, the novel can be read as a love letter to Carmen, who, despite her apparent straightness, incites in Francisca a sexual awakening under the cover of friendship through an evangelical church group, Jovenes en Cristo.
Francisca, it should be noted, resists the religion of her mother Myriam, who joins the evangelical church following a miscarriage.
Ruth Joffre is the author of the short story collection Night Beast. She teaches at Hugo House in Seattle.