Ginny is devastated by the death of her mother, her two little brothers and her sister - but her father is destroyed by the loss.
After a series of drunken mistakes, her father is imprisoned for murder, and Ginny and her little brother Charlie lose the only home they've ever known.
Worse is to come. Charlie is only eight years old and has a weak chest.
Ginny is determined to keep him with her, but he is taken to the workhouse before she has a chance to save him.
Lonely and desperate, Ginny wanders the streets of Nuneaton.
She finds honest work at the pie shop - until she is forced to fight off the unwanted advances of the baker and she's out on the streets.
It's only then that she remembers her father's final words - the housekeeper of Lamp Hill Hall will help her.
Soon Ginny is employed as a laundry maid, the very lowest rung of the ladder.
Her beauty and grace mean that she catches the eye of the house's mistress, who raises Ginny up to play lady's maid to the difficult and demanding Miss Diana.
All Ginny wants is to find her brother - and it will take all her strength of heart and courage to bring her family together again.