Cherie Dimaline

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Cherie Dimaline
Cherie Dimaline at the Eden Mills Writers Festival in 2016
Dimaline at the Eden Mills Writers' Festival in 2016
Born2 July 1975
GenreFiction, Young adult

Cherie Dimaline is a Canadian Métis writer.[1] She is most noted for her 2017 young adult novel The Marrow Thieves, which won the Governor General's Award for English-language children's literature at the 2017 Governor General's Awards[2] and the 2017 Kirkus Prize in the young adult literature category,[3] and was one of the books competing in CBC's 2018 Canada Reads competition.[4]

She is a member of the Georgian Bay Métis Nation.[1] She won the award for Fiction Book of the Year at the Anskohk Aboriginal Literature Festival for her first novel, Red Rooms.[5] She has since published the short stories "Seven Gifts for Cedar", the novel The Girl Who Grew a Galaxy,[6] and the short story collection A Gentle Habit.[7]

She was founding editor of Muskrat Magazine, was named the Emerging Artist of the Year at the Ontario Premier's Awards for Excellence in Arts in 2014, and became the first Aboriginal writer in residence for the Toronto Public Library.[7]

The Marrow Thieves: critical reception[edit]

The story is set in a dystopian future in which people have lost the ability to dream, with catastrophic psychological results. Indigenous people, who can still dream, are hunted for their marrow to create a serum to treat others. Told in the voice of teenaged boy and archetypal reluctant hero Frenchie, Dimaline's book "thrusts readers into the complex lives of rich and nuanced characters forced to navigate a world that too closely resembles our own."[8] The American Kirkus Reviews praised the book for its "tremendous emotional depth and tenderness."[9] The Globe and Mail said "Dimaline takes one of the most well-known tropes in YA – the dystopia – and uses it to draw explicit parallels between the imagined horrors of a fictional future and the true historical horrors of colonialism and residential schools" and called the book "beautifully written as it is shocking and painful."[10]


  • Red Rooms (2011)
  • The Girl Who Grew a Galaxy (2013)
  • A Gentle Habit (2015)
  • The Marrow Thieves (2017)


  1. ^ a b "Cherie Dimaline: ‘My community is where my stories come from and it’s also where my responsibilities lie’". The Globe and Mail, June 30, 2017.
  2. ^ "Governor General Literary Awards announced: Joel Thomas Hynes wins top English fiction prize". CBC News, November 1, 2017.
  3. ^ "Cherie Dimaline wins U.S. Kirkus Prize for The Marrow Thieves". CBC Books, November 3, 2017.
  4. ^ "Meet the Canada Reads 2018 contenders". CBC Books. 30 January 2018. Retrieved 30 January 2018.
  5. ^ "Anskohk Aboriginal Literature Festival and Book Awards - Lifetime Achievement Award presented to Basil Johnston and Book Award Winners Announced". Canada NewsWire, October 20, 2007.
  7. ^ a b "Q & A with North York library’s writer-in-residence Cherie Dimaline"., June 8, 2015.
  8. ^ "The Marrow Thieves - Quill and Quire". 14 August 2017.
  9. ^ "THE MARROW THIEVES by Cherie Dimaline - Kirkus Reviews".
  10. ^ "Review: Heather Smith's The Agony of Bun O'Keefe, Cherie Dimaline's The Marrow Thieves and S.K. Ali's Saints and Misfits" – via The Globe and Mail.