All big-hearted Katie Mehan ever wanted was health and happiness for her family and the love of her husband, Pat. But as work at the docks gets scarcer and the political unrest of the 1930s begins to impinge on them, she wonders if even this is too much to ask. Especially when Pat begins to show the strain in gits of temper aimed, to her astonished fury, at Katie herself. Meanwhile their 16-year-old daughter Molly is getting an increasing amount of attention from boys in the area, in particular from the masterful and confident Bob Jarvis. But Jarvis has a darker side - his links with the violent Blackshirts. And when Molly meets another boy, Jewish Simon Blomstein, she begins to realise life isn't as simple as she thought it was. . .