In Kalyna Clark has created an engaging protagonist, together with a plot that grabs and holds the reader’s attention. Using family and community history, Clark shines the light of fiction on a period when hundreds of Ukrainians, along with other ethnic groups, were sent into forced labor camps, often leaving wives and children on farms recently hacked out of wilderness. This is a timely novel coming as it does when the propaganda of fear is again being used to dehumanize people who can be identified as Other.
— Bernice Morgan, author of Random Passage
Possession, in its many forms, weaves through this story about Wasyl and Katja, a young couple fleeing occupied Ukraine to Edna-Star, Alberta. Passionately written, Kalyna explores the physical possession of the prairies and the prairie’s possession of Wasyl and Katja. Separation, betrayal, community and family are part of the history of a family whose strongest desire is to be allowed to fully embrace their new Canadian life on the prairies.Clark writes her characters with a hopeful heart and provides them the capacity to forgive, despite atrocities endured.
— Lisa Murphy-Lamb B.Ed., M.Ed Loft 112, Director

Swept up in a whirlwind courtship, Katja and Wasyl begin life anew in a Ukrainian settlement of Western Canada. The dusty Canadian prairies promise hope and independence, but when war breaks out between the old world and the new, their newfound stability is shattered. Rumours of the internment of Ukrainian-Canadians haunt the new settlers. Would the country they love betray them like this? An incident throws the couple and their young children into turmoil, and Katja faces the prospect of enduring a Canadian winter without Wasyl by her side. The close community of Edna-Star bands together during this trying time, but the help of the suave Dr. Smith holds it’s own danger. Is the family strong enough to weather the storm that they are up against? 


Pam Clark grew up in Edmonton, Alberta close to Edna-Star, and lived with the story of Wasyl, Katja, and Kalyna inside of her for many years. Kalyna is her first novel and is a tribute to her Ukrainian-Canadian heritage and prairie home. She now lives in Calgary with her family.