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When her grandmother dies, Gabby discovers an old letter concealed in a secret compartment in the roll-top desk made four generations earlier. 

The secrets it reveals belong to an even earlier generation-the first members of Gabby's family to cross the ocean from Britain to Australia, over 150 years ago. 

In 1855 Sarah and Mary are alone on The Colchester, after their parents are both killed by the deadly disease on-board. The family left their home in Wales in an attempt to find a better life in the colonies but with both parents dead the sisters are devastated, with no idea what to do next. 

Sarah also becomes ill and, worried about passing her illness to Mary, encourages her to spend the days away from the stuffy cabin, in the fresh air on deck. Befriended by a gentleman, Mary finds herself swept up in a hopeless cycle of shame and lies, with no way out. 

When the girls arrive in Melbourne they have little hope of finding suitable work and make a drastic decision which could lead either to fortune or disaster.

About The Author

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Christine was busy at home for quite a few years, with five sons to look after and lots of books to read. It never occurred to her she would write books herself, until she started an art and design course at TAFE, when her youngest son started school. 

She enjoyed the class but realised she was better at the theory side than the actual painting etc. After the art class she took on a writing and editing class and immediately felt at home. 

She went on to study history at university and graduated with honours. Since then she's been writing horror, romance, historical fiction, along with one non-fiction crime story, and supernatural books for adults, as well as a variety of children's/YA books.

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