Kiss of the Fur Queen
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The novel's main characters are Champion and Ooneemeetoo Okimasis, two young Cree brothers from northern Manitoba who are taken from their family and sent to a residential school. Their language is forbidden, their names are changed to Jeremiah and Gabriel, and the boys are sexually abused by priests. However, a wily trickster figure, the Fur Queen, watches over the boys as they fulfill their destiny to become artists.
The novel, a fictionalized account of the real-life childhood of Highway and his brother René, was a nominee for the Canadian Booksellers Association Libris Award and the Books in Canada First Novel Award in 1998.
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