August 01 , 2007

Krystyna's Story


A piecing together of a Polish child's journey through Europe at war, and a young woman's bewildering encounter with rural New Zealand.'As a child I loved my mother but she seemed different from other mothers. She didn't know how old she was. She couldn't remember where she was born. I wondered what had happened to her that she could have forgotten such important things. It had something to do with the Second World War . . . 'Krystyna is one of 732 'Polish children' who survived forced deportation to the Soviet Union and was given a home in New Zealand in 1944. Her remarkable story, a composite portrait drawn from interviews with Polish survivors, begins in a peaceful Polish village and follows her family's harrowing journey to a labour camp in Siberia, the terrible flight to freedom, and Krystyna's lonely voyage to a safe refuge in New Zealand.

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