Nancy Richler, author of The Imposter Bride, dead at 60

Richler's third and final novel, 2012's The Imposter Bride, was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize.
Nancy Richler on the red carpet at the 2012 Scotiabank Giller Prize. (The Canadian Press/Frank Gunn)

Nancy Richler, the author of the novels Throwaway Angels, Your Mouth Is Lovely and The Imposter Bride, has died at the age of 60 from complications related to cancer, according to her publisher, HarperCollins Canada. 

"Nancy was an elegant writer whose work resonated deeply with readers," her editor, Iris Tuplholme, said in a statement. "She had an extraordinary ability to see into the human heart to create complex characters who survived war, displacement and loss but who also cherished beauty and kindness and searched for happiness." 

Richler's third and final novel, 2012's The Imposter Bride, was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize. The novel was set in Richler's hometown of Montreal and told two parallel tales: the story of a woman seeking the mother who abandoned her as an infant and that of her mother, an enigmatic Second World War survivor.

Her first novel, Throwaway Angels, came out in 1996 and was shortlisted for the Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Crime Novel. Her follow-up, Your Mouth Is Lovely, won the 2003 Canadian Jewish Book Award for fiction.

Richler was born in Montreal and spent time in Colorado before settling in Vancouver. It was there she started writing fiction, in 1988.

"There's no work I enjoy more than struggling with words and sentences to tell the story I want to tell and to capture precisely what I want to say," she told CBC Books in 2012.

In addition to her novels, her short fiction appeared in numerous anthologies and magazines including the New Quarterly, Prairie Fire and the Journey Prize Anthology.

Nancy Richler talks to CBC about life as a writer and her Giller-nominated novel The Imposter Bride, a parallel tale about a woman seeking the mother who abandoned her as an infant and that of her mother, an enigmatic Second World War survivor. 2:50

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