When a little girl asks her Baba to tell her a story about a princess and a monster, what she hears is so much more—the true tale of her grandmother’s escape from a prisoner of war camp in Siberia to freedom, all with the help of a secret message hidden in a nesting doll. The perfect happily ever after!
Carola Schmidt lives in Curitiba, Brazil. Called Carolina at birth, she was nicknamed Carola by her Baba (grandmother) Amelia who emigrated to Brazil from Ukraine. Wanting to know more about her grandmother’s homeland, Carola traveled to present-day Ukraine. She returned understanding that our memories are like a favorite blanket creating a cozy feeling of belonging. It was in Ukraine where she decided to write this story—a tale of how she imagined her missing family history and their escape from a difficult time long ago. Today, Carola writes children’s books and works as a pediatric oncology pharmacist, helping children going through cancer treatments.
Anita Barghigiani was born near Pisa on September 24th, 1987. After graduating at the Academy of Fine Arts of Florence, she took part in many festivals as a scenographer and photographer. In 2010, she attended the Bologna Children’s Book Fair for the first time and fell in love with children's books! She then decided to study Illustration and Entertainment Design at NEMO Academy of Digital Arts. Since then, she’s worked as an illustrator for publishers and as a painter and decorator for Dolce & Gabbana. She currently lives in Florence where she works, plays the guitar, and actively helps animals as a volunteer.
A beautiful, but heartbreaking, tale of survival told through the eyes of a grandmother who endured what became known as the Holodomor, this story belongs in elementary collections. This is a timely lesson that exemplifies how often, miserably, history repeats itself.
– School Library Journal
Timely, with relevance to today’s difficult Ukrainian struggle as history is repeated.