BOOK CLUB: The River Gum Cottage

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The River Gum Cottage is not the first of Leonie Kelsall’s books that I have had the delight to read. 

Set in a rural town of South Australia, I found that The River Gum Cottage links to previous books of Leonie’s, and so when characters appeared I had the excitement of already knowing their back story. 

This does not mean that you have to read other books first, as reading them in any order works perfectly well.

In The River Gum Cottage, we meet Lucie who is forced to return home after the passing of her father.  Coming home is not an easy thing for Lucie, as she has to deal with her mother’s difficult personality.

Plus, there’s her mother’s disappointment that Lucie would have a child with an older man who decided he wanted nothing to do with either of them. Lucie’s cute as a button daughter, Keeley easily wins heart with her adorable nature, but Lucie is fearful that Keeley’s father will appear on the scene and suddenly decide he wants visitation rights.

That adds an extra layer of concern and nervousness about being home.

Jack has been working on a plot of land that he shared with Lucie’s father. He still owes money on it, and at the moment he is unable to pay.  He had put all his spare time into caring for the plot of land, and the rest of his time had been spent caring for his loving grandparents who raised him with care. 

With the passing of his partner, he worries that he is going to have to deal with the loss of the land and all his hard work will have been for nothing.

Jack finds that Lucie sets his heart racing, but he also knows that she will be in control of what happens with the plot of land, and what will become of all his hard work. There is no way he wants the town to be talking and saying that he was using her just to get his hands on the land. 

I really love Leonie’s writing and was delighted to reacquaint myself with characters from previous books.  Leonie has a way of writing that makes you feel as if you are a part of the town and the characters are people you know and care about.

A selection of our Beauty and Lace Club Members are reading The River Gum Cottage by Leonie Kelsall. You can read their comments below, or add your own review.

9 thoughts on “BOOK CLUB: The River Gum Cottage

  1. Lucie really had her guard up in this story as she was out to protect herself and her daughter.
    I really got to like the small town that was her home when Lucie was younger and it was a very interesting story, especially how I got to know her mother who I changed my mind about a few times.
    An all round interesting read with a lot of emotional parts throughout.
    Thanks for this wonderful read!

  2. Another fabulous read fromLeonie Kelsall.
    This story also focuses on the wonderful outback Australia, and this time our very own state of SA.
    Family secrets, deceptions, and lies, which have led to heartaches, make for an intiguing read. You can’t help but wonder what is going to unravel, so you turn another page.
    Jack and Lucie have so much in common, but there are misunderstandings, and quietly hidden fears in both their minds, many brought on my Lucies controlling mother.
    I love the way the story steps back in time in a few chapters, giving us some insight into perhaps why Lucies mother, is the way she is.
    The twist at the end I never saw coming, but it was written in such a way that you really couldn’t even guess what the outcome would be, until it completely unfolded.
    A wonderful story of loves lost, loves found, building trust, and a true pssion for our wonderful land. Throw in a true best friend who is there for Lucie through thick and thin, as well as her adorable little girl, and you have a really great read. I highly recommend to anyone 5***** from me.

  3. I’ve loved all of Léonie’s previous books and The River Gum Cottage was no exception.
    Endearing, realistic characters make the story a pleasure to read.

    The book reads well as a stand alone but I loved that familiar characters from previous books came in and out of the story.

    There is a mystery running through the story, some cheeky red herrings and plenty of road bumps for our couple, Jack and Lucie, to get over.

    The story had me fully immersed and turning the pages eagerly hoping that Jack and Lucie would end up together.

  4. Thanks Beauty and Lace for the opportunity to read another of Leonor’s books having previously read The Farm at Peppertree Crossing. Once again The River Gum Cottage didn’t disappoint – Lucie a single mum and family issues sees her head back to her hometown following the death of her father – we have flashback chapters of her Mums life – and then we have local man Jack who is her late fathers business partner – soon their lives become entwined and as the back of the book says they must discover that home is wherever the heart is. A great read thoroughly enjoyed it. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  5. Thanks to Beauty and Lace for the chance to read The River Gum Cottage by Leonie Kelsall.

    I am a fan of Leonie Kelsalls writing style – I absolutely loved her first two books and The River Gum Cottage certainly lived up to them.

    Leonie excels at describing life in a small country town and weaves interesting and complex characters and stories with some plot twists thrown in for good measure.

    I was also happy to return to Settlers Bridge, a location in some of her other books – but fear not, this story stands on its own feet. Lucie’s and Jack’s story is a great read and back story of her mothers life goes a long way to explaining some of her actions (only some….). This is a book full of heart and characters who feel real, with issues that engage and resonate with the reader. A great book!

    Highly recommended!

  6. Thanks for the opportunity to read The River Gum Cottage by Leonie Kelsall. What a beautiful story and a relatable one about love, keeping our guards up to protect ourselves and our kids. Lucie is such a beautiful character and her story is heartwarming and set in the beautiful Adelaide Hills. I found it easy to relate to Lucie and this book had me hooked. I loved every page and I’ve added Leonie Kelsall to my list of authors to read. 5 stars from me

  7. Thanks so much for reading, ladies!
    For those of you following the linked books (The Farm at Peppertree Crossing, The Wattle Seed Inn, The River Gum Cottage) next July’s release, The Willow Tree Wharf will be the story of Jack’s sister, Sam, the owner of Ploughs & Pies, whose tale is hinted at in River Gum 😉

    If you have time to review on Goodreads – or simply rate, no review needed – I’d SO much appreciate it!

    Lee x

  8. Loved this book as much as I loved her other books thanks to beauty and lace and Léonie for the opportunity to read the book

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