Madeleine, a beautiful peasant girl, cant resist the charms of Jean, a handsome champion of the upper class. She surrenders to her heart's desires, and their love sweetens into something amazing. But when her father is murdered, her dreams of marriage collapse before the impenetrable wall of class prejudice. With her grim new prospects restricted to life as a beggar or a whore, Madeleine grasps at the only escape she can: a new life in the New World. She signs a contract to emigrate to Quebec-where she'll marry a stranger and bear many children to help populate the New France colony. Madeleine's experience quickly turns bitter as she struggles to overcome the frigid Canadian winters, the constant threat of Iroquois attack, wild animals, and the soul-eroding abuse of her husband. Isolation and crushing homesickness set in. Worse, just as she comes to feel she cant go on, the real nightmare begins: she discovers that the very man who murdered her father is living on her farm. Her struggle for survival of body and soul are set against the expansive parama of colonial Quebec, a place of awesome beauty and lethal danger. As Madeleine's extraordinary love story unfolds, real historical characters and authentic cultural details weave seamlessly into a rich tapestry of courageous pursuit of love and dreams. Can her spirit resist defeat under extreme tribulation and deprivation of emotional support?