Destination: Montreal

March 13, 2013

“Below them is a French city, primarily, and English, too, home to countless nationalities, mingling on the one hand, blending languages on the streets, but also carefully guarding their separateness, one culture from the other. They enjoy a city graced by the mountain’s beauty, made fortunate also by the river, the calm, powerful St. Lawrence, connecting the island to the world.” – John Farrow, City of Ice 

Historic Montreal,Canada


Read up on an insider’s take on the city to learn (and love) all things Montreal.



Take a ride through the streets of Montreal with this virtual bus tour. And in another video, writer Glen Rotchin talks about how Mordecai Richler successfully depicts Montreal’s neighborhoods and people.



The Truth Is

The Truth Is by Mary Soderstrom

Writing for Quill & Quire, Mark Pupo described the characters in this story collection as living “in a Montreal of nasty weather and nastier neighbors. Soderstrom’s version of Montreal isn’t an advertisement for tourists, which makes her characters’ attempts to be neighborly brave and often foolish acts.”

The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz by Mordecai Richler                   

The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz by Mordecai Richler

Duddy Kravitz is a young Jewish man consumed by his obsession with power and money in the poor districts of Montreal.


Black Bird by Michel Basillieres

Black Bird by Michel Basilières

The Desouche household, a family of both English and French, lives together in filth and poverty, facing the hard times of Montreal in the 1970s.


City Unique by William Weintraub

City Unique: Montreal Days and Nights in the 1940s and ’50s by William Weintraub 

An entertaining and vivid 1940s depiction of the corrupt yet vibrant city of Montreal.


Earth and High Heaven by Gwethalyn Graham

Earth and High Heaven by Gwethalyn Graham 

During World War II, young, wealthy, protestant Erica Drake and Jewish lawyer and soldier Marc Reiser fight to overcome anti-Semitism in Montreal in order to save their romance.


The Tin Flute by Gabrielle Roy

The Tin Flute by Gabrielle Roy 

In the Saint-Henri slums of Montreal, a family struggles to overcome poverty on a quest for love. 

For more Montreal reads, visit Marianne Ackerman’s “Imagining Montreal” post at

Kirsten Viohl is a WLT intern.