Fran Goldman, fresh out of journalism college in 1937 is eager to fight for the disadvantaged in her home town of Bellevue, Georgia. When handsome, impoverished Bernie Garfield comes along riding the boxcars, she knows he is someone special. Sure enough, youthful attraction grows into abiding love. It is this powerful passion that brings them through the terrors and anti-Semitism of World War Two. But Fran's determination to defend the persecuted leads to a shattering act of violence, leaving her scarred forever.
The new generation must succeed where the parents failed. The Garfield girls begin to fulfil Fran's dreams, encountering obstacles their mother never even imagined. For the times have moved on; if the choices are wider, then the risks are that much greater . . .