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New Country, New Life cover

  • eBook Edition
    • 978-1-03-918425-1
    • epub, pdf files
  • Paperback Edition
    • 978-1-03-918423-7
    • 6.0 x 9.0 inches
    • Black & White interior
    • 186 pages
  • Hardcover Edition
    • 978-1-03-918424-4
    • 6.0 x 9.0 inches
    • Black & White interior
    • 186 pages
  • Keywords
    • Ukrainian culture,
    • Ukrainian resistance,
    • Ukrainian immigrants,
    • Ukrainians in Canada,
    • Ukrainian diaspora,
    • Displaced persons,
    • Ukrainian cookery

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New Country, New Life
A Family Memoir
by Chrystyna Zorych Holman

What is it like to leave behind everything and everyone you’ve ever known amidst terror, trauma, and war, knowing you will never see them again? How must it feel to come to a strange, new land, and have to build a community from scratch? And what, finally, does it mean to pass on this legacy to your children, and theirs? The engrossing story of Chrystyna Zorych Holman’s family touches on all these questions. As part of the third wave of Ukrainian immigration post-WWII, they came to Canada as refugees. Her parents, both writers and activists, met at a rally for a free and democratic Ukraine—a cause they would champion even after their move to Canada. With their two young children in tow—Chrystyna and her baby sister, Kvitka—they would make the incredible crossing of the Atlantic by boat to start a new life in Manitoba, only narrowly missing the Gulags. Despite harrowing beginnings, Holman’s story is a tale of love, levity, and the beauty of community. Readers young and old will appreciate the intergenerational story she weaves as her family moves from Manitoba to Toronto to Charlottetown, recounting tales of her mother’s acerbic wit in dealing with her young students, her father’s rebuffs of her potential college beau, or her daughters bonding with her parents through the traditions they brought from home. Holman’s tale involves a wide cast of characters from the Ukrainian-Canadian community that congregated around her family, and speaks to a world of invaluable Ukrainian cultural knowledge—touching on everything from Christmas traditions, embroidery, and pysanky to the poems of women political prisoners in the USSR. It is sure to make a wonderful addition to the shelves of Ukrainian-Canadians interested in their history—or anyone looking for a more intimate sense of the multicultural fabric of Canadian society.

"New Country, New Life, a family memoir by Chrystyna Zorych Holman, is a labour of love. Love for her parents who sacrificed much to come to Canada, their two small daughters in tow, after escaping Ukraine in the 1940s. Love of Canada for opening its doors to them. And love for her fellow Ukrainians who, along with her parents, went on to create vibrant communities across the country. Zorych Holman provides a first-hand account of this journey - of the hard times, as well as the good. Her book is full of wonderful vignettes which showcase resilience, determination, ambition, as well as sparkling humour. At a time when the fate of Ukraine is of global concern, New Country, New Life provides a personal glimpse into the richness of Ukrainian culture and the fortitude of its people." —Lois Sweet, writer and retired faculty member of Carleton University's journalism department

Chrystyna Zorych Holman photo

Chrystyna Zorych Holman is a Ukrainian-Canadian immigrant, author, teacher, mother, and wife. Originally from Mostyska, Ukraine, her family would make the difficult crossing of the Atlantic to flee political strife in their native land as part of a wave of immigration to Canada post-WWII, where her family would go on to build a life—first in Manitoba, then Toronto. Having lived through dramatic circumstances leaving their homeland and establishing life anew, Chrystyna long wished to collect her family’s story in one chronicle—for her sake, that of her children, and that of anyone interested in the Ukrainian diaspora in Canada. Besides having lived through these experiences firsthand, Chrystyna’s background as a teacher of students young and old—including teaching newcomers English—has given her a deep appreciation for the multicultural and ethnic fabric of Canadian society and the many ways people come to be part of it. She has travelled all over the world including to Australia, Japan, Ukraine, and China—as part of her teaching work. She holds a Master’s Degree in Education. Chrystyna lives in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island with her husband, Alan, and their frisky, energetic Scottie. Together, they have three daughters, who live in Ontario and Quebec, and two beautiful grandsons. Beyond writing, Chrystyna loves to read, travel, host, and cook—and learn anything new.


Chrystyna Zorych Holman

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