Lizzie and Celia are the best of friends. But their families, the Miltons and the Slatterys, are the worst of enemies, divided by religion and by status. So their friendship is a carefully guarded secret, for if Celia's father Charlie ever heard of it he would beat her to within an inch of her life. Then one day the unthinkable happens. Joe Slattery, Lizzie's brother, does a good turn for the Milton family and rescues their youngest from a grievous accident. From that day forth, Celia Milton just can't get Joe out of her mind. And, despite himself, Joe Slattery is increasingly drawn to Celia and to a love that seems doomed to heartbreak - unless they can find a way around the prejudice of generations and the terrifying bigotry of Charlie Milton...