The Tillerman's Gift
From Vietnam to Afghanistan, this is the story of two families impacted by war. Tess’s boyfriend, killed in Vietnam, left her a key that she believes represents his promise to marry her on his return. Mia, her granddaughter, has other ideas and tries to discover the real meaning of the key. Meanwhile, Tess’s daughter, Alison, is dealing with the news that her fiancé is missing in Afghanistan. More
Tess Newell returns to Clowder Bay, her home town, to find closure to her thwarted relationship with the man she loved as a teenager, and whose child she bore. All that Tess has of Charlie after he was killed in Vietnam is an engraved key - she calls it her promise key - which represents his promise to marry her when he returned.
Tess is accompanied by Alison, the daughter Charlie never knew, and whose fiancé is missing in action in Afghanistan, as well as by Mia, Alison's teenage daughter.
They meet Kim Trang who is facing eviction from her home. Kim tells of her childhood in Vietnam during the closing stages of the war and how, with her cousin, she escaped and made her way to Australia and ultimately to Clowder Bay.
The Tillerman’s Gift tells of Peter’s fate at the hands of the Taliban.
It tells of Kim’s escape from Vietnam and how Tess’s and Kim’s stories and unanswered questions are entwined.
It also tells the story of Mia befriending Jimmy, Kim’s son, and how they try to deal with the unwelcome attention of local bullies.
With the help of a stray cat and a mysterious bikie, and in an adventure that almost sees her lose her life, Mia tries to discover the real meaning of her grandmother’s key.