"After it happened they were sent away." So begins Kit Pearson's new novel of mystery and family loyalty. It is 1932. Polly, almost ten, and her older sister, Maud, travel by train and boat from Winnipeg to an island between Vancouver and Victoria. There they will live with their grandmother, who will be their guardian. Maud will go to boarding school in Victoria, while Polly will live with her grandmother and attend the small school on the island.
Their grandmother and other family members welcome the girls warmly; new-school jitters give way to new friendships and even a new puppy; and slowly Polly feels that she is becoming part of a larger family she never knew until now.
But Polly and Maud have a dramatic secret, and they have promised each other never to tell anyone. A surprise arrival on the island, however, threatens Polly's newfound happiness and tests the bonds of family love. Can Polly keep the secret and her new life on the island?