In 1831 John Dodgson Carr, son of a Quaker grocer, set off to walk from his home in Kendal to Carlisle, determined to launch a great enterprise. Within 15 years, Carr's of Carlisle had become one of the largest baking businesses in the world -and is a by-word for biscuits to this day. Following his trail to Carlisle (where she herself was born and grew up), Margaret Forster brings 19th-century daily life into vivid focus and charts the rise and rise of a middle-class family like the Carrs, ambitious, innovative yet sternly religious. This is history as it was lived by the men and women both above and below stairs - from the shop floor to the comfortable bourgeois homes of the paternalistic Carrs. We see the conflict between religion and profit, the family feuds and the changing face of a city through this compelling historical narrative, told with Margaret Forster's characteristic blend of scholarship, readability and marvellous attention to the texture of everyday life.