When her friend and business partner Edwin Brown dies it seems as if Katherine Carter's own world has ended. Not only has her closest companion been taken from her, she's also lost the successful restaurant they built up together, as well as the comfortable home they shared with her young son. Now all this has been snatched away, for Edwin has left no will and his lecherous brother Gerald presumes he's inherited Katherine along with the house. With little money but full of determination Katherine escapes Gerald's violent advances and takes lodgings in Rotherhithe, with her cook's sister Milly. Despite its poverty, Docklands London is full of hope and friendship and, in helping her new neighbours through their difficulties, Katherine finally begins to tackle her troubled past. But even as she rebuilds her life around the pie-and-mash shop where she works, a terrible shadow is hanging over the country. And little does anyone know the horrors 1914 will unleash ...