honoured Guests

The poet Patrice Desbiens and his works

André Roussil (Bibliothèque Ahuntsic)

André Roussil (Bibliothèque Ahuntsic)

Author of thirty or more books of poetry over the course of forty years, Patrice Desbiens is a rarity among poets in that he has garnered both critical acclaim and popular success. Today he is recognized as one of the major Canadian writers of our time.

In 1997, he was awarded the Prix Champlain for his book of poetry Un pépin de pomme sur un poêle à bois and, in 1998, the prestigious Prix des Terrasses Saint-Sulpice for La fissure de la fiction. In 1985, his book Dans l’après-midi cardiaque was a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award. This year, his book Vallée des cicatrices is a finalist for the 2016 Prix des Libraires award.

A number of singers and musicians in Québec (Chloé Sainte-Marie, Richard Desjardins, René Lussier) and in Ontario (Serge Monette, Konflit Dramatik) have put his poems to music. Four of his works were adapted for the stage by Franco-Ontarian theatre companies: L’homme invisible / The Invisible Man, Les cascadeurs de l’amour, Un pépin de pomme sur un poêle à bois and La fissure de la fiction.

His most recent book of poetry, Le quotidien du poète, will be released by Prise de parole on March 15, 2016.


Suzanne Aubry

A graduate of l’École nationale de théâtre du Canada in play writing, Suzanne Aubry has had resounding success with her play La nuit des p'tits couteaux, which has been nominated for the Governor General’s Literary Award. She is also the co-author of three very popular television series: À nous deux!, Sauve qui peut! and Mon meilleur ennemi. Suzanne Aubry also wrote the script for the film Meurtre en musique (based on the novel Meurtre en 45 tours de Boileau-Narcejac), distributed in Québec and in Europe.

Suzanne Aubry participated as a writer in six short films for the series La boîte de Pandore, part ot the educational series Pour tout dire produced by the National Film Board. She was among the winners of the 16/26 contest for her script of the short film SignéCharlotte S., directed by Lorraine Pintal, and she translated two plays staged by the Jean-Duceppe theatre company.

Her first novel, Le fort intérieur, which was hailed by critics as “a delightful debut novel” and “a tour de force”, has been nominated for the 5th edition of the Grand Prix de la relève littéraire Archambault award

Among her other professional activities, Suzanne Aubry was a critic and columnist for Le Devoir, Le Matin and Jeu, among others. She taught play writing at the Institut national de l'image et du son (INIS), Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) and École nationale de théâtre du Canada (ENT). She served as president of SARTEC (Société des auteurs de radio, télévision et cinéma) from 1996 to 2000 and currently sits on the board of UNEQ (Union des écrivaines et écrivains québécois) as secretary-treasurer.

Her seven-volume saga ‘Fanette’, which follows the life story of an Irish orphan girl exiled to Québec in 1847, is widely popular and has sold over 95,000 copies. Aubry is currently working on a television adaptation of her historical saga. The English translation of the first volume of the ‘Fanette’ series was published in November 2015.

Her most recent novel, Ma vie entre tes mains, was published by Libre Expression in October 2015.

The film La voyageuse dans le temps explores the author’s passion for writing and follows her career as an author (filmed by Noushin Nasri and directed by Mo Saemi).


Léa Clermont-Dion

Léa Clermont-Dion is a speaker, columnist, blogger and director. She is a co-instigator of Québec’s Charter for a healthy and diversified body image. As a feminist, she has worked with Québec’s Conseil du statut de la femme (council on the status of women), Secrétariat à la condition féminine (secretariat of women’s issues) and Oxfam-Québec in Burkina Faso. Her first book, La revanche des moches, enjoyed wide success. She also edited with Félix-Antoine Michaud the book Lettres à un souverainiste. She is currently pursuing a doctorate in political science with cyberviolence against woman as her thesis topic. She is the director of the documentary film Beauté fatale, which examines the limits of the quest for beauty.


 Son sujet de thèse est la cyberviolence faite aux femmes. Elle prépare d'ailleurs un documentaire sur la question.


Simon Boulerice


Simon Boulerice is an eager jack-of-all-trades: author, actor and director. He has written approximately ten plays, including Qu’est-ce qui reste de Marie-Stella? (Dramaturges Éditeurs) and a work of autofiction, Simon a toujours aimé danser (Fringe award, 2007), which he presented on tour as far away as in Tchad (Africa), as well as France and Belgium.

He has also published novels for adult readers, Les jérémiades and Javotte (the latter won the Prix des lecteurs émergents de l'Abitibi in 2013), novels for young readers, Jeanne Moreau a le sourire à l’envers and Edgar Paillettes (the latter won the Prix des libraires jeunesse in 2014), as well as three collections of poems, including Saigner des dents (awarded the Prix Alphonse-Piché).

 These days, Boulerice is writing more works for younger audiences. He is currently on tour with his play Les mains dans la gravelle (winner of two awards in 2011: the Prix du spectacle de l'année des jeunes critiques de la Montérégie and the Prix du public de Beloeil). In 2005, he co-founded the company Théâtre Abat-Jour, which twice received the audience choice award at the Gala des cochons d’or in 2011 for his play Martine à la plage.

His book Un verger dans le ventre has been published in France by Grasset and in Germany by Diogenes. Meanwhile, he has recently published in Québec an album for very young children, Albert 1er, roi du rot, a novel for children, La tempête est bonne, a book of poetry for teens, Les garçons courent plus vite, a novel for adults, Le premier qui rira, and the last volume of his series ‘M’as-tu vu?’, Le plan d’ensemble.

 At age 33, Simon still does ‘the splits’ at least once a day.

 Follow this link to the article Simon Boulerice, un enfant pas comme les autres by Nathalie Petrowski.


Didier Leclair


Didier Leclair (real name Didier Kabagema), was born in Montreal. He left his birthplace at an early age when his Rwandan parents decided to move the family back to Africa and he grew up in various Francophone countries.

In 1987, Didier Leclair left Africa to pursue a university education back in Canada. He chose to live in Toronto after having completed a degree in literary studies at Laurentian University in Sudbury. He further studied at Glendon University College in Toronto before becoming a TV journalist with TFO and later a radio reporter with Radio-Canada, and then a communications agent. Currently, he is a translator and proofreader for a marketing and publishing company in Toronto.

Didier Leclair won the Trillium Award in 2000 for his first novel, Toronto, je t’aime. His second novel, Ce pays qui est le mien, a stark and uncompromising socio-political critique, became a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award. He was also a finalist for the 2015 Trillium Award for his fourth novel, Le soixantième parallèle. His seventh novel, published in 2015, is titled Pour l’amour de Dimitri.