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A Swallow Press Book

Stolen Life
The Journey of a Cree Woman

By Rudy Wiebe and Yvonne Johnson

“A compelling story of sexual abuse, racism, alcohol addiction and human tragedy … Wiebe’s voice, calm yet tense with the anger of perceived injustice, helps us stay the course.”

Financial Post

Stolen Life brings us the story of one woman seeking to reclaim her history, to understand her pain, and to honour her responsibilities.”

Quill & Quire

“Deeply affecting … A rare book, one that resonates for months after you read it and challenges and changes your perspective on the world.”

Vue Weekly

“An extraordinary chronicle … A tribute to the human spirit that refuses to give up; to family love that persists in the face of thoughtlessness, repeated violence, and denial.”

Globe and Mail

The award-winning Stolen Life is a remarkable collaborative work between a distinguished novelist and a Cree woman who broke a lifetime of silence to share her story. Imprisoned for murder at the age of twenty-seven, Yvonne Johnson sought out Rudy Wiebe, the chronicler of her ancestor Big Bear, as a means of coming to terms with her self, her past, and the crime that defines her future. The ensuing story, which is told with Wiebe’s compassion and infused with Johnson’s intelligence and spirituality, defies the grisly events of her life.

Rudy Wiebe is the author of several short story collections and essays. He also is the author of eight novels, including A Discovery of Strangers and The Temptations of Big Bear, both winners of the Governor General's Award for Fiction. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta.   More info →

Yvonne Johnson is a member of the Cree nation. She was imprisoned for first-degree murder in 1991 in the Kingston Federal Prison for Women before being transferred to the minimum security Okimaw Ohei Healing Lodge for Native Women in Saskatchewan in 1995.   More info →

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