The Lost Year: A Survival Story of the Ukrainian Famine

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
January 2023
9 hours 5 minutes
'Narrators Anna Fikhman, Christopher Gebauer, and Jesse Vilinsky combine talents in this compelling historical fiction, which takes place during the Ukrainian famine of the 1930s.'- AudioFile

Author's note read by the author.

From the author of Nowhere Boy—called “a resistance novel for our times” by The New York Times—comes a brilliant middle-grade survival story that traces a harrowing family secret back to the Holodomor, a terrible famine that devastated Soviet Ukraine in the 1930s.

Thirteen-year-old Matthew is miserable. His journalist dad is stuck overseas indefinitely, and his mom has moved in his one-hundred-year-old great-grandmother to ride out the pandemic, adding to his stress and isolation.

But when Matthew finds a tattered black-and-white photo in his great-grandmother’s belongings, he discovers a clue to a hidden chapter of her past, one that will lead to a life-shattering family secret. Set in alternating timelines that connect the present-day to the 1930s and the US to the USSR, Katherine Marsh’s latest novel sheds fresh light on the Holodomor—the horrific famine that killed millions of Ukrainians, and which the Soviet government covered up for decades.

An incredibly timely story of family, survival, and sacrifice, inspired by Marsh’s own family history, The Lost Year is perfect for fans of Ruta Sepetys' Between Shades of Gray and Alan Gratz's Refugee.

Praise for The Lost Year

'The Lost Year is both timeless and timely, a tapestry woven of complex lives in a loving family over generations, as Mattie's lockdown catches fire when he unearths a guilty secret fearfully guarded for nearly ninety years by his Ukrainian great-grandmother. Katherine Marsh is a genius for creating people that feel real in a story that feels magical.” — Elizabeth Wein, #1 New York Times-bestselling author of Code Name Verity

“Katherine Marsh tackles a heart wrenching slice of history — the mass starvation of millions of Ukrainians under Stalin — with an unwavering gaze and great empathy. Be forewarned: this book will change you.” — Kirby Larson, Newbery Honor-winning author of Hattie Big Sky

'The Lost Year brings this little-known slice of history to life with lively characters and a high-stakes plot that'll keep you turning pages.' — Steve Sheinkin, Three-Time National Book Award Finalist

'Katherine Marsh has beautifully woven a gripping tale covering both the Stalin-orchestrated Ukraine famine in 1932 and the beginning of the pandemic in 2020. Marsh shows us how deeply connected we are to our past and that in the middle of a societal crisis where disinformation is rampant, the ultimate truth can be found in the relationships we hold dear. It will break your heart and put it back together again. A must-read especially for these times.' — Veera Hiranandani, Newbery Honor-winning author of The Night Diary

A Macmillan Audio production from Roaring Brook Press.
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