Can Susan escape the dark shadows of her childhood...? Born into the squalor of the notorious Ash-Pits, young Susan Lucket is determined to raise herself above the poverty of her childhood. Discovering she has a natural talent for nursing, she forges a new life for herself - and as an independent, unmarried midwife, she is a woman far ahead of her time. But when Edward Calthorpe, youngest son of the privileged landowner, offers her marriage, the memory of her terrible childhood returns to haunt her. And when Edward's wayward brother seduces little Polly, her beloved younger sister - and then betrays her in the most brutal of ways - Susan faces losing everything she has struggled for. Can she find the strength to fight for her right to happiness?