Gum Tree Girl
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Gum Tree Girl by Kalpana Iyer

Sydney Cartwright is a woman driven by dreams: completing a teaching degree, getting a job that doesn’t leave her exhausted every day, giving her daughter a better life and finding people she can trust. But she’s tired. Tired of earning a precarious living as a night shift waitress. Tired of navigating a sleepless life as a single mum and student. Tired of hiding parts of her past to make herself palatable to unpalatable men. Armed with aspirations, she ventures out from the caravan park she has known as home ever since her mother left her at her stoic grandmother’s door and stumbles into the arms of a soft-hearted stranger — her awkward but perceptive physics lecturer Anand. She soon finds him tearing down the walls she built around her heart to steel herself against the present and mask the pain of her past. As they piece together the puzzle born of her broken heart, they realise they’ve coloured the picture painted thereon with patience and trust to a degree neither has felt before. But when the rising tide of their love threatens to crumble their cautiously built castle and drive them apart forever, they are faced with the central question: how far are they willing to go to choose each other?
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