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Fiction Sagas

Twists of Fate

If by Chance & Destination Paradise

translated by Linda Gaboriau

by (author) Michel Tremblay

Initial publish date
Feb 2022
Sagas, Literary, General
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Feb 2022
    List Price

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Michel Tremblay’s Twists of Fate gathers volumes 6 and 7 of the critically acclaimed Desrosiers Diaspora series of novels, If by Chance and Destination Paradise. In If by Chance, set in 1925, the great Ti-Lou, the famous She-Wolf of Ottawa, returns to Montréal. After a fruitful career at the Château Laurier, in the royal suite where she welcomed diplomats and men of the world, politicians and ministers of worship, she packs up and sneaks off, her suitcases replete with savings acquired at the cost of her body. Unrepentant, always whimsical, a damsel in distress, Louise Wilson-Desrosiers was a proud, free, exemplary courtesan … When she arrives in the hall of the Windsor station, she wonders what surprises life may have in store for her. Five possible fates await her, each with their share of risks and opportunities, of good and less good fortune. But in each of these lives, Ti-Lou will have to deal with more than mere chance, because awaiting her at the crossroads are the blade of loneliness and, worse still, the fear of allowing herself to be loved. In Destination Paradise, we enter the Paradise Club, on 1930s Montréal’s Main Street, one of the few places that caters to old boys, in a spot dubbed the Ringside. It’s where Édouard Tremblay made his entry into the “big world,” shortly after becoming a shoe seller on the avenue du Mont-Royal. Precocious despite his eighteen years of age, he is carried away by his double, the Duchess of Langeais, whose story he has just read in Balzac’s eponymous novel. Of course, we already know that Édouard will become the Main’s undisputed queen of the Montréal drag scene, associated with the spectacular Acapulco nights; but we knew less about Édouard’s beginning in life, the childhood of his stage character. Destination Paradise tenderly exposes Édouard’s rite of passage.

About the authors

Linda Gaboriau is an award-winning literary translator based in Montréal. Her translations of plays by Québec’s most prominent playwrights have been published and produced across Canada and abroad. In her work as a literary manager and dramaturge, she has directed numerous translation residencies and international exchange projects. She is the founding ­director of the Banff International Literary Translation Centre. Gaboriau has twice won the Governor General’s Award for Translation: in 1996, for Daniel Danis’s Stone and Ashes, and in 2010, for Wajdi Mouawad’s Forests.

Linda Gaboriau's profile page

Michel Tremblay
One of the most produced and the most prominent playwrights in the history of Canadian theatre, Michel Tremblay has received countless prestigious honours and accolades. His dramatic, literary and autobiographical works have long enjoyed remarkable international popularity, including translations of his plays that have achieved huge success in Europe, the Americas and the Middle East.
Awards and Recognition*
Prix du Grand (2009) La Traversée de la ville (Leméac Editeur Inc.)
Blue Metropolis International Literary Grand Prix (2006)
Globe and Mail Top 100 Books (2003) Birth of a Bookworm
Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding New Play (2000) For the Pleasure of Seeing Her Again
Chalmers Awards (1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1978, 1986, 1989, 2000)
Governor General’s Performing Arts Award (1999)
Molson Prize for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts (1994)
Louis-Hémon Prize (1994)
Montreal Book Fair Grand Public Prize (1994)
Banff Centre National Award (1992)
Officer of the Order of Arts and Letters of France (1991)
Chevalier of the Order of Quebec (1990)
San Francisco Lesbian and Gay Festival Long-Standing Public Service Award (1989)
CBC Anik Prize (1988)
Athanase-David Lifetime Achievement Prize (1988)
Quebec-Paris Prize (1985)
Chevalier of Arts and Letters of France (1984)
John Van Burek
John Van Burek has been a practising theatre artist for over 20 years, in both French and English, throughout Canada. He has also worked in the fields of opera, film and television. He is also one of Canada’s leading translators for theatre, most notably of Michel Tremblay’s plays, including Les Belles-Soeurs (Talonbooks). Mr. Van Burek has received several awards and citations for his work, including the Toronto Drama Bench Award for Distinguished Contribution to the Canadian Theatre.
Bill Glassco
Born in Quebec, William Grant (?Bill”) Glassco was a Canadian theatre director, producer and founder of Toronto’s Tarragon Theatre. He then became the artistic director of the CentreStage Theatre Company which merged, in 1988, with the Toronto Free Theatre to become CanStage. In 1982, he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada.

Michel Tremblay's profile page

Other titles by Linda Gaboriau

Other titles by Michel Tremblay