The Edge of the Storm

by Agustín Yáñez

Start Free Trial


Download PDF PDF Page Citation Cite Share Link Share

Last Updated on September 5, 2023, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 361

Father Dionisio is one of the village’s three priests. His character alternates between moral rectitude and compassion for the failings and foibles of others. He appears throughout the novel, often in regard to his role as guardian of his nieces, María and Marta. He moves into the head priest role after Father Islas is incapacitated.

Father Islas is an extremely conservative, sanctimonious parish priest who is obsessed with sin. He tries to control the behavior of the village’s unmarried girls and women, encouraging them to join his society and putting fear of damnation in them if they wear any “revealing” clothes or entertain sexual thoughts, much less engage in premarital sex. His influence is curtailed when he falls ill.

Father Reyes is presented as the foil to Islas, espousing liberal philosophies and borderline subversive politics. Popular with the young people, he thinks the church should change with the times.

María and Marta are Dionisio’s wards; the sisters are his orphaned nieces. They too are presented as polar opposites. While María longs for modern comforts, lovely clothes, and urban entertainments, Marta is committed to service and devotion and envisions life as a mother, including a desire to adopt a child. María joins another woman, the widow of Lucas González, in running off with the revolutionaries.

Timoteo and Damián Limón are father and son. Timoteo, a well-to-do landowner, is an upstanding citizen and pillar of the community, although he suffers internal qualms for having once killed another man in self-defense. Damián, after failing to make a fortune as he expected in the United States, argues with his father upon his return to the village. After a heart attack kills Timoteo, Damián enters a downward spiral, including an affair with a notorious woman, Micaela, whom he later kills. Escaping before his conviction lands him in jail, he too flees to join the revolutionaries.

Micaela Rodríguez, a beautiful, sensuous woman, dreams of returning to Mexico City to enjoy a luxurious life. Her flirtatious behavior and improper dress lead to her ruin, however, and ultimately to her death at Damián’s hands.

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access