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Novels Short Fiction Poetry Non-Fiction Translations Awards


Reine de Mémoire Series (Queen of Memory)



Prix Boréal & Prix Cyrano, April 2007

(For books 3 & 4: "Le Dragon Fou" and "La Princesse de la Vengeance")


Grand Prix de la Science-fiction et du Fantastique québécois and Prix Boréal, 2006

(For books 1 & 2: "La Maison d'Oubli" and "Le Dragon de Feu")


1. The House of Oblivion ("La Maison d'Oubli")

2. The Dragon of Fire ("Le Dragon de Feu")

3. The Mad Dragon ("Le Dragon Fou")

4. The Princess of Vengeance ("La Princesse de la Vengeance")

5. The House of Justice ("La Maison d'Équité")




1. The House of Oblivion ("La Maison d'Oubli")

Aurepas, a small town in the southwest of France, in the year 1789...

Senso and Pierrino are seven-year-old twins who live in an old bourgeois house with Jiliane, their younger sister; she is four and does not speak. The twins have just been confirmed into the Geminite faith, which is the faith of most of Europe: it began in Judea with Jesus and his twin sister Sophia, and its most sacred rites — Suspension, and Sublimation — are magic.

The children lost their parents in a tragic accident when Jiliane was born, and they are brought up by their grandfather Sigismond Garance, a successful merchant and also something of a philosopher, with the help of domma Castelet and dom Patenaude, the mage-ecclesiasts of their parish. Of course, there is also Grandmother — and her five cats — but she never gets out of her chambers, and the children never go in. They only see her twice a day to say good morning and good night. She is... different, like her servant. She doesn't look like everybody else.

One Sunday morning, coming back from the Temple, the children see a window they have never noticed on the second floor of their house's facade. No room corresponds to that extra window. While looking for the elusive room, they discover a magical map, which carries Senso, then Pierrino, somehere else when they poke it with a sharp letter opener - although not moving them physically. Their curiosity is awakened by all this and during their inquiries they discover some strange things about their house, and their ancestors, especially Gilles, the traveller, the explorer, the one who went "Over There", in the country no one speaks of. But Jiliane, who is the first one to enter Grandmother's appartments, already knows that magic is part of the family mysteries.

Meanwhile, we also follow the life and times of Gilles Garance, in the 16th century — a story quite different from the one the twins, and apparently everybody else, think they know.


Alire, Lévis, 2005

Read an excerpt (in English) here.



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2. The Dragon of Fire ("Le Dragon de Feu")

In the old house in Aurepas, Jiliane, Senso and Pierrino are growing up. The golden thread by which they are linked is not as painful now as is used to be, but it is still there. They gradually discover that the history of their family, the Garances, is fraught with much more mystery than they were told.

They are able to learn more about it because the terrible Edict of Silence is being slowly, and secretly, unraveled by the mages : it is a mighty spell thrown forty years earlier by the Mad Queen Jordane, bereft of her daughter and heiress after a great military defeat far away in the East : she wanted the name of the lost land forever erased from all her subjects' memory. That land is Emorie, the country no one talks about, the mysterious Over There where Grandmother comes from, where Grandfather was born and lived for a long time.

From that far Eastern land came ambercite, a mineral much more efficient than coal : only the Garances knew how to refine it and they were the only ones allowed by the Royalty of the land to exploit mines, having thus a monopoly over ambercite production.

And it all began with Gilles Garance, the ancestor, the explorer, the first European ever to set foot in the mythical "Land of the Dragons".

Alire, Lévis, 2005

Read an excerpt (in English) here.



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3. The Mad Dragon ("Le Dragon Fou")

Now sixteen, and though not remembering her dreams, Jiliane still follows Gilles Garance's adventures in the Land of the Dragons, where he is discovering the amazing proprieties of the ambercite compound and living with the three enigmatic and magical Natéhsin who have chosen to share his destiny.

Meanwhile, her older twin brothers Senso and Pierrino have left without her, for the first time in their lives, to journey to Hutland and pay their last respects to their grandmother, Madame d'Olducey, who has bequeathed them letters written by her and their father Henry.

Reading them, Senso and Pierrino are bewildered by unexpected revelations about their grandmother's past and their parents' death. Then, as they hastily leave Paris where they discovered even more oddities, the impossible happens : the golden thread that links them to Jiliane has been broken. Jiliane is nowhere to be found. What on earth might have happened back in Aurepas?

Alire, Lévis, Autumn 2006

Read an excerpt (in English) here.



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4. The Princess of Vengeance ("La Princesse de la Vengeance")


The dire prophecy of the children's other grandmother, Lady d'Olducey, has seemingly materialized : pushed by the mynmaï fortune-telling cards and dice , the grand-children of Sigmismond Garance have been scattered to the four winds...

Senso, one of the twins, while looking for the missing Jiliane, has been hired by the Parisian Company of the Two-Banks, a theater company for whom is father and his mother both worked before their untimely death. The France he travels in with his new friend and lover, Alexis, and his bodyguard, the laconic Larché, is awakening from the Edict of Silence ; the people are also worried or angered by the rumors saying ambercite might be used again. Pierrino, the other twin, has been embarked against his will on The Sea Eagle, Captain Haizelé's ship, and is traveling toward the far East and Grandmother's country, where he'll have to confront the many dangers of foreign politics but also his ancestors' extraordinary magic.

As for Jiliane, who has disappeared in mysterious circumstances, she is gradually taming the power of the Map and is exploring her family's ancestral memory... without suspecting that she will soon discover the secret origins of the Princess of Vengeance.

Alire, Lévis, October 2006

Read an excerpt (in English) here.



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5. The House of Justice ("La Maison d'Équité")


The Dragon's Blood cannot turn against itself, for the world would then surely end : only the child many times reborn from many fathers can to judge the Mad Dragon and bring back the Dragon of Fire.

In the visions that the Map still burdens her with, Jiliane still watches as Gilles Garance and Ouraïn live through the years to meet their fate. Pierrino has shared the Natehsin's dance in the Sacred City, Garang Xhévât, and, changed, he is coming back to France with Haizelé, the female captain of The Sea Eagle, who has become his lover. Meanwhile, still in the theater company, with Larché and the strange young Alexis, Senso is following in his father Henri's as well as his mother Agnès' footsteps and is inexorably traveling back to Aurepas and Grandmother's old, mysterious house.

When they are all together again, in the crucible of truth, what fatal alchemy will fuse the fragments of the past that each of them holds ? What vengeance... or what justice, will take place in the room of the extraneous window, the terrible red chamber?

Alire, Lévis, February 2007

Read an excerpt (in English) here.




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Information in English at Alire


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