Cherie is an award-winning fiction writer from the Georgian Bay Métis Community in Ontario, Canada. She began publishing with the release of her first book Red Rooms (2007) and her first novel The Girl Who Grew a Galaxy (2013); however, she has become most celebrated for her Governor General’s Literacy award winner, The Marrow Thieves, a young adult science fiction released in 2017. Cherie was named Emerging Artist of the Year at Ontario’s Premier’s Award for Excellence in the Arts in 2014 and is the first Aboriginal Writer in Residence at the Toronto’s Public Library.[i]
Cherie grew up in a culture where stories are crucial and she writes in a manner that is very in tuned with her Métis community. In a 2019 interview with Publishing in Canada magazine, Cherie noted how imperative it is that “when Indigenous authors tell stories in an Indigenous context that they should do so in connection to the nation(s) that they are speaking of—or speaking on behalf of—even in fiction.”[ii]
For example, Cherie belongs to the Métis Nation on the Georgian Bay; however, her people used to live on Drummond Island before being forcibly removed. That land is now very valuable as “cottage country” being only one-and-a-half hours from Toronto and its wealthy weekenders.[ii]
Cherie notes that “these removals and relocations of a culture are specific to [her] community, although experienced in different ways by all Indigenous people. It’s part of [their] stories.[ii]
Raven Reads recently featured Cherie’s most recent release, Empire of Wild, a story of heart-break, mystery, Métis folklore and a strange encounter in a Georgian Bay Walmart. This novel has been called one of the most “propulsive, stunning and sensuous” novels of 2019 by Penguin Random House.[iii]
Photos: CBC Books & Publishing Perspectives
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