The Great Plague has London in its grip. As the summer heat rises, red crosses mark the doors, wealthy citizens flee and only the poor remain to face the march of death.
Ambitious and attractive, Bess Bagwell is determined her carpenter husband, Will, should make a name for himself and schemes to meet Samuel Pepys, diarist, friend of the King and an important man in the Navy shipyards. But Pepys has his own motive for cultivating Bess, and it’s certainly not to benefit her husband.
With pestilence rife in the city, all trade ceases. Will is forced to invest in his unscrupulous cousin Jack’s dubious cure for the pestilence which horrifies Bess and leaves them deeper in debt. Now they are desperate for money and the dreaded disease is moving ever closer. Will Pepys honour his promises or break them?