The story begins in 1944, when Jilly makes friends with evacuee Alec who lives on a farm in their Dorset village. When his father dies he is sent to an orphanage, and then to Australia, while Jilly grows up with a feckless mother and a father damaged by wartime service. When she becomes pregnant at seventeen she has no option but to give the baby boy for adoption. Secretly she longs to find her lost son, despite her otherwise happy marriage.
Janet Woods writes with gentle sympathy for her characters. They suffer but surmount tragedies, without the unrelenting angst we find in some sagas. It is a delightful, quiet but convincing love story.