Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Mavis Gallant lives in French but writes in English.

"I live in French," said Gallant, a small but forceful 71-year-old, clenching her fists to emphasize her point. "But I have kept my English writing. Everything that occurs to me occurs to me in English."

The above quote is from an interview with Mavis Gallant from ten years ago that appeared in ParisVoice (the webzine for English speaking Parisians). To read the rest of the Mavis Gallant interview click here.

Mavis Gallant, the author from Quebec who left Canada some fifty years ago to seek her way as a writer in Europe is now in her '80s. This year the CBC Radio Canada Reads challenge invites a panel of three to champion a book that they think Canadians should read. Lisa Moore has chosen the Fifteenth District by Mavis Gallant.

Mavis Gallant has written more than a hundred short stories, many of them published in the New Yorker before appearing in various collections of short fiction. Some of the more autobiographical stories are found in the collection entitled Montreal Stories selected by Russell Banks. The unabridged audio edition of Montreal Stories, narrated by Margot Dionne is published by Rattling Books. It was selected by AudioFile Magazine in the as one of the 12 Best Audio Fiction titles of the year.

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