This richly imagined novel is set against a turbulent backdrop of the First World War, the anti-conscription riots in Quebec, the Roaring Twenties and the onset of the Great Depression. The heroine is the passionate, intelligent Jeanne Langlois, the only child of a powerful Quebec politician and his much younger wife. The story opens as Jeanne, a frail sixteen-year-old, arrives in the winter twilight at a convent in Saint-Boniface, Manitoba, more than 2000 kilometres from her home in Montreal. In a vain attempt to please her fanatically devout mother, Jeanne is trying to believe that she feels a religious vocation. But the convent is bitterly cold, there is never enough to eat and the nuns observe that only the stout and robust novices can endure the privations of their religious life, which includes a vow of silence. Jeanne is unable to bear the loneliness or physical hardships, and soon falls seriously ill. Her mother, Madeleine, refuses to send for her, but she is rescued by her beautiful young Aunt Florence, whom Jeanne thinks of ever after as "The Angel." "The Angel" takes her ailing niece into her own house and under her protection, but after Jeanne's return to health, she must return to her parents' oppressive home. Lonely and lost, innocent and ignorant, Jeanne escapes into marriage with Mick O'Neill, a charming Irishman and her father's protege, but marriage is far from being the haven for which she has longed. This is the story of a passionate woman's quest for happiness and maturity in a repressive society, but it is also a portrait of that society in the throes of overwhelming change. La Passion de Jeanne was on the bestseller lists for over three months in Quebec in 1997.