Blackball, West Coast, pre-World War I. Three youngsters; Pansy, Clem and Otto. Life had an idyllic surface with a far from idyllic underside for youngsters in this mining town. As a World War approaches, the harsh realities become apparent � just because you are smart and motivated there is no certainty that you can advance yourself in this world, especially if you are a girl. With a light hand on a dark time in history, Paddy Richardson navigates the territory between �Denniston Rose� and �Birdsong� with great skill. Characters you want to cry for battle on against themselves, family, society and world events.