When Rose was four the scandal broke about her head. She was really too young to understand what was happening - only that her mother was in disgrace and that they were leaving Aunt Mabe in America and returning home to England. The following May, Joanna - 'Jon' - was born. Rose and Jon were totally different. Jon was vivacious, fun, liked a good time, and always got what she wanted, even when what she wanted happened to belong to Rose. Rose was reserved, controlled, never wanted to leave her home or Gloucestershire, and was - well - an ordinary girl who grew into an ordinary woman. But as Jon raced from disaster to disaster, from one violent relationship to another, Rose, in her quiet way, salvaged the family, held them together, pasted over the cracks of tragedy and emotional upheavals whilst at the same time fighting her own personal crises. It was much later - when the children were growing up, when life at last seemed tranquil and settled - that Jon precipitated Rose across the Atlantic and into the most extraordinary event of her life. When Rose finally returned from America no-one could ever again think of her as an ordinary woman.