A post-Second World War story of strong female ties and family, secrets and lies, set in the multicultural Australia of the fifties.
Can the Bonegilla girls defeat their past? Or will it come to claim them?
1954: When sixteen-year-old Hungarian Elizabeta arrives in Australia with her family, she is hoping to escape the hopelessness of life as a refugee in post-war Germany.
Her first stop is the Bonegilla Migrant Camp on the banks of the Murray in rural Victoria, a temporary home for thousands of new arrivals, all looking for work and a better life. There,
Elizabeta becomes firm friends with the feisty Greek Vasiliki; quiet Italian Iliana; and the adventurous Frances, the daughter of the camp's director.
In this vibrant and growing country, the Bonegilla girls rush together towards a life that seems full of promise, even as they cope with the legacy of war, the oppressive nature of family tradition and ever-present sorrow. So when a ghost from the past reaches out for Elizabeta and threatens to pull her back into the shadows, there is nothing that her friends wouldn't do to keep her safe.
But secrets have a way of making themselves known and lies have a way of changing everything they touch...
'A poignant and compelling read, this is a delightful novel that celebrates all that is good in our multicultural country. It's a beautiful story about female friendship and how it can transcend cultural and language barriers.' - Books + Publishing
'A heartwarming novel...' - The Weekly Times
'A story of strong female ties and family.' - Better Reading