In 1904 twelve year old Ellen Copley and her father leave the sooty rail yards of Glasgow for a new life in Vermont with her aunt and uncle. Yet within weeks of her arrival she is abandoned by her father, living with inhospitable relatives and unwelcome in town. Then her Aunt Rose invites her to stay with her boisterous family on Lake Ontario’s Amherst Island, and Ellen begins to find the love and acceptance she’d long been craving. Soon she is living a fractured existence in both Vermont and Canada, torn between happiness and duty. When a local boy lays claim to her heart, Ellen must decide just where her destiny lies in a changing and increasing turbulent world.