In 1950s Northern Ireland, a province riven by sectarianism, two families harbour a terrible secret.
Rose and Dermot Quinn are Roman Catholics, parents of fifteen children. Their eldest son, John Joe, has just come home from England where he works and sends home much needed money. 
Ruby and Victor Crozier are Protestants, with one daughter, Fen, still at home. When Victor forces her out of school and into work in a linen mill, he unleashes a series of events which threaten to expose dark deeds from the past.
The two families are connected by a history steeped in secrecy, violence and betrayal. Fen and John Joe become friends, and are drawn into a web of danger that emanates not only from within their own homes but also from the growing campaign of Irish nationalists who seek to reunite Northern Ireland with the rest of Ireland. When they become unwilling witnesses to an atrocity, events spiral out of their control and their lives are placed in peril.
Not trusting anyone, not even each other, the two friends must find a way to break free from their families and from the encroaching war they have become entangled in.

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