Boy from Karelia

On Juha's ninth birthday in November, 1939, all ears are glued to the radio. War with Russia is looming. In the middle of the coldest winter in memory, the village is evacuated and the family must leave the homestead they have occupied for over 300 years. They wander from place to place, finally ending up close to Mount Salla in Lapland where Juha and his cousin, Leo, have some wild, foolhardy adventures.

In 1941 the Finnish army pushes deep into Russia and it is safe to return home. The people start to plant the fields and rebuild their destroyed village. But in 1944 new evacuation orders come. Karelia is ceded to Russia as part of the peace settlement. Juha must deal with the grief of losing his home and find something positive in the uncertain future.

"Boy from Karelia poignantly paints a tale of a boy's coming of age during WWII in Finland. We follow the adventures of Juha Leskinen who, with his family, is twice forced to evacuate his ancestral home, ultimately never to return. This exciting, but at the same time haunting novel belongs in any junior, intermediate or senior classroom to promote novel studies, literature circles and discourse about refugees, immigration and displaced people." - Melanie Joye

"This is a novel about the resilience of the human spirit and rings true on a number of levels. Kaarina Brooks has transformed the memoirs of one man into a story about a preadolescent boy and his world. Described grippingly and with empathy the novel, told from the boy's perspective, captures the gradual loss of innocence as he and 440,000 Karelians are forced to abandon forever their ancestral homes during WWII." - Börje Vähämäki

Size:5" x 8", 247 pages
Purchase Now$15.00

Artist Bio

I have sold my paintings at craft shows, both
locally and in Toronto, as well as at Finnish Festivals
around Ontario. My work has found a home as far away
as California and Finland.

Besides watercolours, I also do pencil drawings.
Using this media I translated and illustrated three
books of Finnish folk tales for Aspasia Books.
Writing is my other great love. I have written many
novels, children's books, poetry anthologies, a cook
book, as well as histories. Recently I translated the
Finnish National Epic, Kalevala, as well as the Old
Kalevala to English.

*FortyOne: Local Art Market is a consignment based store, therefore all sales are final*