The author of "Maria Chapdelaine", Hémon was born at Brest, France. He immigrated to Canada in 1911 and spent about eight months in the Lac St. Jean region of Quebec. While working on a farm near Péribonka, he wrote this well known novel, a story of habitant pioneer life, which won widespread recognition. Acclaimed by literary critics in France, it was translated into English and many other languages. The French and English versions sold over a million copies. Though "Maria Chapdelaine" created much controversy, it has been one of the most widely read books written on French Canada. Killed by a train near Chapleau, Hémon is buried in a local cemetery.