Elspeth McDonald travels from her native Scotland to the new world with intentions of working for a widow until her fare is paid and she can start a new life. But she arrives to find an entirely different plan awaits. The widow she was to serve has died from an illness that swept the village, and she learns she will be pressed into the service of Clifford Harker, a taciturn businessman who lost his wife and now faces raising his two young sons alone.
Elspeth is not prepared for Harker’s coldness, nor is she prepared for how strict he is. If she disappoints him or fails to obey in any way, he is quick to correct her physically. Elspeth senses his firmness comes from more than just convictions and when she realizes that he blames himself for his wife’s death, she seeks to reach him and heal his broken family.
But will he accept a fiery woman from another land whose will is as strong as his own?