Eugenie Melnyk My Darling Elia

ISBN 13: 9780312205652

My Darling Elia

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9780312205652: My Darling Elia
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At Montreal's huge Sunday flea market, an elderly man is stricken when he finds a crude locket in a box of jewelry at one of the booths. While recovering, he explains that it was a gift to his beloved wife, who disappeared from their Kiev home in 1941 during the German occupation. He has been searching for her ever since. It is now 1982.
After that first encounter, Elia comes back to the flea market every Sunday to tell his story. It's the tale of a young Jewish mane risking his life to find his beloved. Elia recounts hiss earch for his pregnant wife through war-torn Eastern Europe, barely escaping death at Babi Yar, encountering suspicious partisans, posing as a Nazi soldier, witnessing the destruction of the Polish ghetto, and ending up in a concentration camp. The war over, he follows his wife's trail to Montreal--where it fades away. But three women are moved by his story and join the hunt. At the story's unexpected end, readers will believe that love and hope can in some way survive horror and inspire good.

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About the Author:

Eugenie Melynk, herself of Ukranian descent, was a Canadian writer who lived in Montreal. In a tragic denouement to this story, she succumed to a stroke as this book, a ten-year mission of her own, was being published.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

"Please," he said. "Where did you get this?"

Cia shrugged. Knowing she could only disappoint him, she answered with a trace of impatience in her voice.

"Who knows? We could have bought it at any of a hundred garage sales. Or moving sales. Or church bazaars. Any of the places we buy all this junk." Her arm swept our laden tables. "I can't even remember what we bought last week, much less where we bought it."

The old man flinched at her tone but persisted.

"You can't think where it might have been? Which section of the city? The west island? East end? Downtown?"...

On the verge of giving him a sharp reply, Cia suddenly heard the bleakness in his words.

"Is it so important?" she asked quietly.

For a moment I thought the old man wouldn't answer. He gazed past us, unseeing, the locket tightly clenched in his fist. When he spoke, it was in a voice heavy with desolation.

"Wherever it was, wherever you bought this, my Anna must be there." He turned his eyes on Cia, and once more they were a foggy gray. "Yes. It is so important."

--from My Darling Elia

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Melnyk, Eugenie
Published by Thomas Dunne Books (1999)
ISBN 10: 0312205651 ISBN 13: 9780312205652
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Melnyk, Eugenie
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ISBN 10: 0312205651 ISBN 13: 9780312205652
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