Kobzar's Children: A Century of Untold Ukranian Stories


Among the authors whose work appear in Kobzar's Children with Marsha Skrypuch are:

  • Award-winning author Larry Warwaruk, whose contribution Bargain, set in Saskatchewan, is based on a true story,
  • The Winnipeg-born and -based Brenda Hasiuk whose fiction has been published in leading literary journals. Her contribution to the collection, It's Me Tatia, is set in Western Canada ...
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Among the authors whose work appear in Kobzar's Children with Marsha Skrypuch are:

  • Award-winning author Larry Warwaruk, whose contribution Bargain, set in Saskatchewan, is based on a true story,
  • The Winnipeg-born and -based Brenda Hasiuk whose fiction has been published in leading literary journals. Her contribution to the collection, It's Me Tatia, is set in Western Canada in 1919,
  • Paulette MacQuarrie, a freelance editor and producer of the English-language Ukrainian radio program, Nash Holos, in British Columbia,
  • Poems by Linda Mikolayenko, from Ethelbert, Manitoba, and Sonja Dunn, who has worked in television for almost 30 years, and
  • A high school student from Quebec, Kim Pawliw, who wrote a tribute to her Baba who, as a child was imprisoned with her family at the Spirit Lake Internment Camp.

The Many Circles of Hell, by Stefan Petelycky, a Ukrainian survivor of Aushwitz who now lives in British Columbia, is undoubtedly the most horrific story in the collection. Petelycky vividly describe the barbaric treatment suffered by him and his fellow former prisoners, many of them Ukrainians.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Heidi Hauser Green
This collection of stories was truly a labor of love, borne of the author's lifelong hunger for stories about Ukrainian immigrants like her forebears. Here, gathered together in the pages of a single volume, are stories covering nearly a hundred years of Ukrainian immigrant history, from 1905 to 2004. The stories occur in a variety of settings, from homesteads to cities, internment camps to nursing homes, Ukraine to Canada, and more. Find out how Ukrainian immigrants were treated by Canadian officials during World War I, discover how one boy lost his entire family but somehow escaped from the 1932—1933 Famine-Genocide, and chuckle about one lad's desperate longing for a pair of red boots to wear at a community concert. Read about a farm girl's prank, walk along with a refugee during World War II, and think about the significance of the recent Orange Revolution. And it's all within the pages of this slender book. In this and earlier works, Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch truly continues the tradition of the kobzars, traveling storytellers who collected and shared the stories of the Ukrainian people. Her works are always educational and informative, recounting tales and times that have been ignored and forgotten, but they are certainly never, ever dull.
Children's Literature - Julie Schneggenburger
Kobzars were blind storytellers who traveled through Ukraine, memorizing poems and family histories. Their stories kept Ukrainian culture alive throughout many generations. This book is a collection of short stories from Ukrainian families. Each contributes its own special remembrance of life in Ukraine. Together, the stories piece together a history rich in traditions but torn apart by Communist regimes. Under Stalin, the Kremlin considered Ukrainians an undesirable group in society. Many were deported to concentration camps. Some refugees escaped but suffered from starvation and discrimination. One story tells how a man was so emaciated that his wedding ring slipped off his finger. Some Ukrainians emigrated to Canada and began farms in frontier lands. Country dances, embroidered clothing, and hard work defined their lives. Another story tells how a moose was a regular visitor to one family's farm. As displaced people in a free country, many Ukrainians were still considered lower class. Life was a struggle. One story tells how a father and son reunited in Canada after the war by luck. There is a lot of heartbreak but honesty in these stories. It's clear the author wanted the truth about this people's suffering to be acknowledged, and in the process, the stories give life to a beautiful culture that most people don't know about.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781550419979
  • Publisher: Fitzhenry & Whiteside, Limited
  • Publication date: 6/30/2006
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 160
  • Age range: 9 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Marsha Skrypuch is the author of many books for children, including Silver Threads, The Best Gifts, Enough, The Hunger and Hope's War. Among the numerous writing awards won her novel about the Armenian genocide, Nobody's Child, was nominated for the Red Maple Award, the Alberta Rocky Mountain Book Award, the B.C. Stellar Award; and it was listed by Resource Links as a Best Book.

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Table of Contents



A Home of Her Own by Olga Prychodko

Andriy's Break by Danny Evanishen

Tribute to My Grandmother by Kim Pawliw

It's Me, Tatia by Brenda Hasiuk

The Rings by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch

Spring Harvest by Linda Mikolayenko

The Red Boots by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch

Violin by Sonja Dunn

A Song for Kataryna by Linda Mikolayenko

Memories of Volodymyr Serotiuk's Birthday by Sonja Dunn

Auschwitz: Many Circles of Hell by Stefan Petelycky

Babyn Yar by Sonja Dunn

A Bar of Chocolate by Natalia Buchok

Bargain by Larry Warwaruk

Candy's Revenge by Cornelia Bilinsky

Veechnaya Pamyat by Sonja Dunn

Changing Graves by Sonja Dunn

Before Glasnost, Oy Tovarish by Sonja Dunn

Christmas Missed by Paulette MacQuarrie

The Gift by Sonja Dunn

About the Authors

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