A Rousing Historical Novel about Canadians-in-the-Making.
- This lively ride through the social upheavals of England in the 1870s begins with a newborn baby abandoned in a gutter, stubbornly refusing to die. As little Katie becomes another street child in a part of London where few reach their 20th birthday, her plight moves Amelia Radmore to create a scheme giving destitute youngsters new lives in Canada, a part of the Home Children movement. Amelia, a genteel, sheltered radical, little guesses her unconventional fundraising efforts will trigger a fierce battle of ambitions stretching from the lowest criminal dives into the path of the Prince of Wales himself.
- Strawberry Rose, raising money for Amelia, seizes the chance to take London by storm as a dazzling musical sensation. Red Nell, a powerful underworld potentate, sets out to fleece Amelia’s charity. Nouveau riche Lousia Crisp sponsors Amelia in a desperate bid to social climb way out of her league. Her sons, Henry and Adam, each obsessed with Rose, soon find themselves at each other’s throats. While Amelia faces shattering revelations about the nature of married life, Rose discovers how horrifying a price she must pay for success and true love when Bertie, Price of Wales, steps lustily into the mix, eying Rose for himself.
- Through it all, young Katie joins fellow cast-off in a clawing struggle to stay alive in a hostile world. Will is a chimney’s sweep’s climbing boy, Cully the rickety survivor of a cellar sweatshop, and Laura the pampered but illegitimate darling of an Elizabethan manor tossed out by grasping relatives. Amelia remains their only hope.
- From this turmoil emerges a newbreed longing to throw off the constraints of the Old World and reach for the freedom of the New. They become Canadians-in-the-making, ready to trade England at her peak for a wild risk on infant Canada.
- The only question for kids and grownups alike is will they ever win their chance at this daring dream.