Maria is a girl with a great talent for fabric design, and while the world becomes embroiled in war, all she can think of is her scholarship to the prestigious Grafton Academy. But then her father has a dreadful accident and her mother breaks down in guilt and grief. Maria, the only child, must care for them. Her hopes are dashed, not only of her career, but of marrying the one who's loved her for years. Reluctantly, Maria is driven into the arms of the supposedly reliable Barney. But he's no such thing. The young couple have to leave their home in a hurry and settle in Birmingham, where Barney grows increasingly difficult and finally goes too far. A family crisis ensues but out of it comes the one thing Maria had given up hope of ever finding again.This is a superb saga of love, loss and family closeness, set against the tumultuous years of the war and its aftermath. Established fans of this author will love it and it is set to win her many new dedicated readers.