December 4, 2011 Shiryln-Oborowsky.jpg Alumnus Shirlyn Oborosky's newly published book offers a great message for young readers

Lakeland alum authors first book

When Shiryln Oborowsky was an academic upgrading student at Lakeland College in 1996, she never gave much thought to becoming a published author. That was 15 years ago. Today, with the release of her first novel, she can proudly say that she is.

Oborowsky’s book, Ivy – The Stem of a Rose, is the story of a nine-year old impoverished Metis girl living in rural Alberta in the 1970s. She lives with her single mother and two sisters. When Ivy’s sisters become ill, she seeks help from their neighbor. It’s a story about survival, courage and strength.

“It’s a heartwarming story and meant to empower young readers who can relate to Ivy,” says Oborowsky. She adds that much of the book is based on her own experiences with episodes of adventure and suspense intertwined.

Ivy – The Stem of a Rose is also a story about the challenges faced by Metis people living off of aboriginal settlements. In fact it was Oborowsky’s own daughter who inspired her to write the story.

“When my daughter was about 12 years old she would come home and tell me about some of the comments that she heard about Metis and Native people,” says Oborowsky. “Many of them were stereotypical comments and mistruths and I was so surprised because I thought attitudes had changed from the time when I was a child. I wrote the book to help her realize that what she was hearing wasn’t true.”

Ivy – The Stem of a Rose, published by InkWater Press, is a two-part novel and available online through Amazon, Chapters, Indigo, Barnes and Nobel, and can be ordered through local bookstores.

A sequel is planned to be published next year.

Photo: Oborowsky lives in Wainwright, Alta. She recently visited Lakeland College to leave a copy of her book for Stu McGregor, one of her former instructors.