Callum O' Shaughnessy is Liverpool Irish. Ninth child of a tumultuous, affectionate, mostly devout, sometimes too outspoken family. He has 'got on', working his way up by sheer hard work and dedication to be master of his own ship. Maris Woodall's family know about ships as well. They own them. Along with their kin, the Osbournes, they live the comfortable life of the landed gentry. Callum and Maris, from families that seem fated to meet and collide, are so different in class, experience and even age; ill-matched yet passionately attracted. But as the Depression years of the 1930's give way to World War, everything around them is in a state of violent upheaval that echoes their own stormy love.