Ville Marie"" is now Montreal. In the days when Louis XIV ruled France and Mme. de Maintenon ruled Louis, when Frontenac was eating his heart out, desperately begging to be sent back to his beloved New France, when French and Indians were in deadly conflict on the border lands, ""Ville Marie"" was barely more than a thinly protected fort, a jungle, and land which was slowly awakening to its role of agricultural riches. This is the story of the giant Breton, Paul de Lorimier, studious farmer who loved Jacqueline, but did not know how to tell her; of Jacqueline, who yearned to leave Brittany behind her and know Paris, but who found it too much for her when opportunity came; of Jules, who laughed and loved and gambled, and who changed both of their lives. Mne. de Maintenon had her finger in the circumstances that sent them all to Canada -- where they learned to live anew, and when need came, to die. A rather grim page of history, enlivened by skillful weaving of a human story. The author has been awarded the Governor-General's Annual Literary Award for the best Canadian novel of the year.