French / Canada (Québec)

Maria Chapdelaine
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Hémon, Louis (text)
Tremblay, Jennifer (adapt.)
Rovira, Francesc (illus.)
Montréal: Éd. de la Bagnole [et al.], 2013. – 164 p.
ISBN 978-2-923342-93-1

Quebec / 19th century | Settler | Wife | Marriage | Historical fiction

This critical adaptation makes the great classic of French Canadian literature about the fate of a young nineteenth-century woman in the remote region of Peribonka accessible for today’s young readers. Maria, the beautiful and energetic daughter of a settler family, must choose between three suitors for marriage. Her secret favourite, Francois, tragically dies in a snow storm. Out of a mixture of duty and resignation, Maria chooses a life of austerity as a settler’s wife.

Jennifer Tremblay presents a condensed version of Louis Hemon’s masterpiece, which for a long time was misclassifi ed narrowly as ≫rural literature≪. Tremblay’s adaptation, co-published by de la Bagnole and Soulieres presses, brings out the original’s essence: its poetry, its local colour and its
social critique, as well as the documentarian and allegorical elements. (Age: 10+)