About the Author

Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch

Marsha Forchuk Skrypuch's 18 award-winning books for young people include Last Airlift: A Vietnamese Orphan's Rescue from War, a Red Cedar Information Book Award winner and OLA Red Maple Honour Book. Its sequel, One Step at a Time: A Vietnamese Child Finds Her Way, is the winner of the 2014 Silver Birch NonFiction Award. In 2008, in recognition of her outstanding achievement in the development of Ukraine's culture, Marsha was awarded the Order of Princess Olha. She lives in Brantford, Ontario.

Books by this Author
Adrift at Sea

Adrift at Sea

A Vietnamese Boy's Story of Survival
edition:Hardcover
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Excerpt

On the second day, our boat springs a leak. I wish I could drink the water that laps around my feet, but it’s full of salt. Ma and Nghia take turns bailing. It’s hard work and few offer to help. Don’t they realize our boat could sink? The captain gives them a bottle of water in thanks. We hide this treasure in our bags.

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Cher Journal : Prisonniers de la grande forêt

Cher Journal : Prisonniers de la grande forêt

Anya Soloniuk, fille d'immigrants ukrainiens, Spirit Lake, Québec, 1914
edition:Hardcover
also available: eBook
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Dance of the Banished
Excerpt

“I’ll come back for you as soon as I save the money. We’ll get married. In the meantime, I’ve brought you a gift.” I reached into my bag and drew out two identical journals. “One of these is for you. While we are apart, keep this journal for me and I’ll write in the other for you. As you fill each page, tear it out and mail it to me. I’ll do the same. That way, we will still be together.” Zeynep took the journal and frowned, flipping through its blank pages. “I refuse to be your betrothed, never knowing when, or even if, you’ll come back.” She pulled a thin leather strap from around her neck. Strung on it was her cherished blue evil-eye bead that had protected her ever since she was a baby. “Take this.” She stood on her tiptoes to put it over my head. “It will keep you from harm. I’ll always love you, but I will not wait for you. We both deserve better than that.”

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Dear Canada: Prisoners in the Promised Land

Dear Canada: Prisoners in the Promised Land

The Ukrainian Internment Diary of Anya Soloniuk, Spirit Lake, Quebec, 1914
edition:Hardcover
also available: eBook
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Enfant volée

Enfant volée

edition:Paperback
also available: eBook
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Last Airlift

Last Airlift

A Vietnamese Orphan’s Rescue from War  
edition:eBook
also available: Hardcover Paperback
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One Step at a Time

One Step at a Time

A Vietnamese Child Finds Her Way
edition:eBook
also available: Paperback Hardcover
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Stolen Girl
Excerpt

When it is my turn, Mutter tugs at my hair and braids it up more tightly than she needs to. "There," she says with a cold edge in her voice. She hands me the mirror. "Don't you look lovely?"

The face that looks back at me is the same one as always. I never think of myself as lovely.

A long black car with a small swastika flag on each side of the hood idles in the driveway as we walk outside. A uniformed man opens the back door. Mutter gets in first, then Eva, then me. The upholstery is lush black leather that gleams from a fresh buffing. The car door is closed with a firm click and we speed away.

It takes half an hour of fast driving to get into the city. The streets narrow. Our driver slows down so we can wave to the blocks and blocks of cheering crowds.

When we get within walking distance of the stage, the car stops. Soldiers push the crowd away so we can get out, and then they lead us to the steps on the side of the stage. Most of the chairs are taken by Nazi officers, but there are a few other mothers and children as well. We take our spots in the front row, behind the podium.

The crowd roars as another long black car pulls up. When the führer steps out, the crowd goes wild. Vater gets out of the car just behind the führer.

The crowd chants "Heil Hitler! Heil Hitler!" as the führer steps onto the stage, but it is as if he doesn't notice. He walks up to me and crouches down until we are eye level. He is so close to me that I can see his nose hair and smell the slightly spicy scent of his hair pomade.

"What a perfect specimen of Aryan youth you are, my dear," he says, pinching my cheek. I smile. What else can I do? Vater stands behind the führer, bursting with pride, but Eva looks like she is about to cry and Mutter's lips are a thin white line.

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The War Below
Excerpt

My eyes flew open but my arms and legs refused to move. Where was I? The star-peppered sky loomed huge above me. One of the stars grew bigger and brighter and that's when I truly woke up.It was heading right for me.My muscles screamed as I rolled off the road and fell down into a ditch. The ground shook as the bomb hit, frighteningly close. Ignoring the pain, I pulled myself onto my feet. Where I had lain just seconds ago was now a smoking pit.A bigger bomb landed somewhere in the distance, lighting up the farmers' fields and a patchwork of familiar factories up ahead.Another white explosion on the road. My knees buckled and I fell to the ground.What madness had made me escape? Yes, it had been harsh at the labor camp, and yes, people like me who were given the worst jobs rarely survived. But my friend Lida was back there. Maybe I should have stayed in the hospital. Maybe they wouldn't have killed me.Poor Lida. Even though she had urged me to go, I felt like such a bad friend for deserting her.She thought of me as her big brother Luka and I loved her with all my heart. Was she sleeping safe in her barracks right now? I hoped that she would understand why I had no choice. Josip hadn't been badly injured, yet the care he received hadn't made him any better. I didn't trust them at the hospital. So when the chance came for me to get out, I had to do it. Maybe Lida would escape somehow as well.Surely the war would end soon, and I had to get back to Kyiv to find my father. I'd walk the whole way there if I had to.

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