Gabrielle Roy (1909 – 1983)

Gabrielle Roy
© Annette & Basil Zarov, 1945

Gabrielle Roy was a French Canadian author and teacher. Born in Saint Boniface, Manitoba, she trained as a teacher and taught at rural schools in Marchand and Cardinal before she was hired at Provencher School in Saint Boniface. In 1937, Gabrielle moved to Europe to pursue her interest in the arts. Two years later, with the outbreak of the Second World War, she returned to Canada, settling in Montréal. There she wrote fiction while supporting herself as a sketch artist. Her first novel, Bonheur d'occasion, was published in 1945 and earned her the Prix Femina. The English translation, The Tin Flute, was published in 1947 and won the Governor General's Award for Fiction. The recipient of numerous honours and awards, Gabrielle went on to publish widely and to be read by millions of Canadians, francophone and anglophone alike. She is considered one of Canada's most important writers.

“Could we ever know each other in the slightest without the arts?”
- The Hidden Mountain

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