Little Girl Lost

Sixteen-year-old Basia Kohn (now Betty Rich) escapes the invasion of her small hometown and, crossing the border into Soviet-occupied Poland, she begins a journey that takes her thousands of kilometres from a forced labour camp in subarctic Russia to subtropical Soviet Georgia. Always optimistic and ready to take on new adventures as she struggles to survive in exile without family, Rich’s memoir, Little Girl Lost, is a “montage of graphic snapshots and moments in motion….” Wherever she finds herself, whatever she has lost, Betty is determined to survive on her own terms.

At a Glance
Poland; Soviet Union
Escape
Soviet labour camp in Siberia
Wartime postcards
Postwar Poland
Life under Communism
Arrived in Canada in 1949
Adjusting to life in Canada

256 pages

Recommended Ages
14+
Language
English

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Photo of Betty Rich

About the author

Betty Rich was born Basia Kohn in Zduńska Wola, Poland, on June 10, 1923. After the war, Betty lived in Lodz, where she married her husband, David Recht. They fled the Polish Communist regime in January 1949 and arrived in Toronto later that year. Betty worked in mortgages and investments until her retirement. Betty Rich passed away in 2017.

The more we felt the Germans’ heavy boots in our lives, the more I knew that I had to leave... but I was scared. Where was I going to go? What would I live on?