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Liverpool, 1963. Mary Kate Malone is bitterly unhappy that her father has married again after the death of her mother. She leaves home in Tarabeg on the west coast of Ireland and heads for Liverpool to find her mother's sister. But she finds herself penniless and alone, with no place to stay and no idea how she will survive. Meanwhile, back in Ireland, a long-buried secret is about to come to light which will set an unstoppable chain of events in motion.