The War Below

The Nazis took Luka from his home in Ukraine and forced him into a labor camp. Now, Luka has smuggled himself out — even though he left behind his dearest friend, Lida. Someday, he vows, he’ll find her again.

But first, he must survive.

Racing through the mountains, Luka evades capture by both Nazis and Soviet agents. When he meets the underground Ukrainian Insurgent Army, he knows that is where he belongs: fighting Nazis and Soviets alike. But the desperate rescues and guerilla raids put Luka back in the line of fire. Can he persevere long enough to find Lida again or make it back home where his father must be waiting for him?

Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch, author of Making Bombs for Hitler, delivers another action-packed story of daring quests and fights for survival. Inspired by true stories, this novel is a testament to the strength of the human spirit in the face of war.

Making Bombs for Hitler (new)

USbombsLida thought she was safe. Her neighbors wearing the yellow star were all taken away, but Lida is not Jewish. She will be fine, won’t she?

But she cannot escape the horrors of World War II.

Lida’s parents are ripped away from her and she is separated from her beloved sister, Larissa. The Nazis take Lida to a brutal work camp, where she and other Ukrainian children are forced into backbreaking labor. Starving and terrified, Lida bonds with her fellow prisoners, but none of them know if they’ll live to see tomorrow.

When Lida and her friends are assigned to make bombs for the German army, Lida cannot stand the thought of helping the enemy. Then she has an idea. What if she sabotaged the bombs… and the Nazis? Can she do so without getting caught?

And if she’s freed, will she ever find her sister again?

This pulse-pounding novel of survival, courage, and hope shows us a lesser-known piece of history — and is sure to keep readers captivated until the last page.

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Don’t Tell The Enemy

Krystia’s family is hiding Jews from the invading Nazis, but the risks are immense. How much will she risk for her friends? A gripping story based on true events.

During the Soviet occupation of Ukraine during World War II, some of Krystia’s family are harrassed; others are arrested and killed. When the Nazis liberate the town, they are welcomed with open arms. Krystia’s best friend Dolik isn’t so sure. His family is Jewish and there are rumours that the Nazis might be even more brutal than the Soviets.

Shortly after the Nazis arrive, they discover a mass grave of Soviet prisoners and blame the slaughter on the Jews. Soon, the Nazis establish ghettoes and begin public executions of Jews.

Krystia can’t bear to see her friends suffering and begins smuggling food into the ghetto. When rumours circulate that the ghetto will be evacuated and the Jews will be exterminated, Krystia must decide if she’s willing to risk her own family’s safety to save her friends.
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Kobzar’s Children

Kobzar's Children
Kobzar’s Children

This unique anthology introduces new voices and a century of hidden stories.

The kobzars were the blind minstrels of Ukraine, who memorized the epic poems and stories of 100 generations. Traveling around the country, they stopped in towns and villages along the way, where they told their tales and were welcomed by all. Under Stalin’s regime, the kobzars were murdered. As the storytellers of Ukraine died, so too did their stories.

Kobzar’s Children is an anthology of short historical fiction, memoirs, and poems written about the Ukrainian immigrant experience. The stories span a century of history; and they contain stories of internment, homesteading, famine, displacement, concentration camps, and this new century’s Orange Revolution. Edited by Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch, Kobzar’s Children is more than a collection; it is a moving social document that honors the tradition of the kobzars and revives memories once deliberately forgotten.
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Hope’s War

Kataryna Balyk, a gifted fine arts student, is hoping to have a fresh start at Cawthra School for the Arts, after a less-than-successful year at the neighbouring Catholic high school.

But her hopes for a peaceful grade ten are shattered when she comes home from one of her first days at Cawthra and finds the RCMP interrogating her grandfather Danylo Feschuk. Kat learns that Danylo is accused of being a policeman for the Nazis in World War II Ukraine, and what’s worse, he is suspected of having participated in atrocities against civilians.

When the story is exposed in the local newspaper, Kat and her family become the centre of a media storm. Her grades in school and her relationships with friends suffer. Her only support comes from her family and Ian, a classmate with whom she discovers she has more in common than just artistic promise.
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Stolen Child

They call her the “Hitler Girl” . . .

Stolen from her family by the Nazis, Nadia is a young girl who tries to make sense of her confusing memories and haunting dreams. Bit by bit she starts to uncover the truth — that the German family she grew up with, the woman who calls herself Nadia’s mother, are not who they say they are. Beyond her privileged German childhood, Nadia unearths memories of a woman singing her a lullaby, while the taste of gingersnap cookies brings her back to a strangely familiar, yet unknown, past. Piece by piece, Nadia comes to realize who her real family was. But where are they now? What became of them? And what is her real name?

This story of a Lebensborn girl — a child kidnapped for her “Aryan looks” by the Nazis in their frenzy to build a master race — reveals one child’s fierce determination to uncover her past against incredible odds.
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Making Bombs for Hitler

In this companion book to the award-winning Stolen Child, a young girl is forced into slave labour in a munitions factory in Nazi Germany. In Stolen Child, Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch introduced readers to Larissa, a victim of Hitler’s largely unknown Lebensborn program. In this companion novel, readers will learn the fate of Lida, her sister, who was also kidnapped by the Germans and forced into slave labour — an Ostarbeiter.

In addition to her other tasks, Lida’s small hands make her the perfect candidate to handle delicate munitions work, so she is sent to a factory that makes bombs. The gruelling work and conditions leave her severely malnourished and emotionally traumatized, but overriding all of this is her concern and determination to find out what happened to her vulnerable younger sister.

With rumours of the Allies turning the tide in the war, Lida and her friends conspire to sabotage the bombs to help block the Nazis’ war effort. When her work camp is finally liberated, she is able to begin her search to learn the fate of her sister.
In this exceptional novel Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch delivers a powerful story of hope and courage in the face of incredible odds.
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Underground Soldier

A companion to the award-winning books Stolen Child and Making Bombs for Hitler.

Fourteen-year-old Luka works as an Ostarbeiter in Nazi-occupied Eastern Europe, alongside Lida from Making Bombs for Hitler. Desperate to escape the brutal conditions of the labour camp, he manages to get away by hiding in a truck under a pile of dead bodies.

Once free, Luka joins a group of Ukrainian resistance fighters. Caught between advancing Nazis in the west and Soviet troops in the east, they mount guerilla raids, help POW escapees, and do all they can to make life hard for the Nazis and Soviets. After the war, Luka must decide whether to follow Lida to Canada — or stay in Europe and search for his long-lost mother.

Underground Soldier is a companion book to Stolen Child and Making Bombs for Hitler, and a perfect entry point into the series for new readers, as the books can be read in any order.
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lovely letter

Hello Marsha,

My name is T, and I would like to tell you this wonderful story.

My mother had given a copy of your book, Nobody’s Child, to my teenage children about a year ago. Being an Armenian, and having read many books based on the Armenian Genocide, I was curious about the information contained in this little book. As I read it over the past summer, I fell in love with it and immediately got and read Daughter of War. I was amazed at finding all the delicate, small but important details in those two books, things that I had not seen in the many books I had come across before.

In our school district for 10th grade English class the children have to choose a book from a list of books, representing conflicts in the history of different nations, and write a research paper on that subject as well as present it to the rest of the class.

Last year, with my daughter being in that class, she wished to do her paper and presentation about the Armenian Genocide.
Since she had not yet read any books on this subject, and there were no books about this in the class list, I suggested Nobody’s Child and the teacher approved. She did an excellent job with both the paper and the power point presentation, scoring a perfect grade plus extra credits. We were thrilled with this; but there was more to come.

The teacher had liked the book and added it to the list. This meant that as of January 2011, for years to come, every 10th grader in our district will be told the true facts of the Armenian Genocide, based on your book.

Thank you for a beautiful book.

T