Dorris Heffron was born in Noranda, Quebec. While teaching for Oxford University throughout the seventies, she wrote three novels about teenagers which were internationally acclaimed as pioneers of young adult literature. Returning to Canada in 1980, she became an active member of writers' organizations and wrote the popular adult novel, A Shark in the House.
A moving historical tale and remarkable literary achievement, City Wolves is the story of Canadaâ€™s first woman veterinarian, Meg Wilkinson. Born in 1870 on a farm near Halifax, Megâ€™s childhood experience with wolves makes her determined to be a veterinarian. Supported by the seemingly eccentric Randolph Oliphant and inspired by the ancient Inuit who first turned wolves into sled dogs, Meg surpasses the horse doctors at vet college and becomes the notorious â€™dog doctor of Halifaxâ€™ in the 1890s. After her unusual marriage ends abruptly in Boston, Meg travels to Vancouver and up to the Yukon, seeking the legendary sled dogs. Arriving at the beginning of the Klondike gold rush, she makes her way amidst Mounties, dance hall girls, Klondike Kings, mushers, priests and swindlersâ€¦all the mangy and magnificent people, dogs and spirits that populated raucous Dawson City.
Observed through the restless spirit of Inuit Ike, this is lively, insightful, historical fiction, subtly revealing the wolf-like nature of humans and the human nature of wolves. Both earthy and reflective, City Wolves is an important story told with compassion, humour and unflinching realism. In this her fifth novel, Dorris Heffron has created a wide range of unforgettable characters and achieved a breadth of vision exploring the deep conflicts and interconnection of social beings in a way that is uniquely Canadian and profoundly universal.