[ Book ] The Last of the Bonegilla Girls

September 28, 2018

The Last of the Bonegilla Girls

Victoria Purman

Rating: 4 / 5 


Although a work of fiction, this book stems from the author’s background—the book is dedicated to Purman’s grandparents who lived at Bonegilla migrant camp in 1954.


Three young immigrant girls, Hungarian Elizabeta, Greek Vasiliki and Italian Iliana, form a friendship with the camp director’s Australian daughter, Frances.


As good-natured Frances helps the girls learn English, an incredibly strong friendship bond is formed, and the girls share their triumphs and tragedies from 1954 to the present day.


This is a fascinating book that gives real insight to life in a migrant camp, in the days when Australia welcomed immigrants from war-torn Europe to become ‘new Australians’.

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Vol. 139, No. 14 // 11 April 2020

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