Cassie Andrews has come to Brunswick County to build the controversial high-rise bridge to the idyllic barrier island of Sunset Beach. She gets more than she bargained for when she stumbles onto a murder and meets Michael Troy, the cop who will light a passion in her that she doesn’t know she has. As she struggles to prove herself and fit into the community, Michael tries to solve the murder of one of the island’s most disdained citizens. Had he hated the idea of the new bridge so much that it had cost him his life? Just who has he upset this time? Michael wanted a southern bride, a gently-bred woman of the south. So why was this little imp, who liked to play in the dirt with her Tonka toys, turning him inside out?
The earl of Sefton is delighted when he sees the midwife approaching bearing a tiny bundle. Within moments of being introduced to his new son, his world is shattered by the news that his wife did not survive the birth. Thorne, a man used to commanding regiments, puts his emotions aside to deal with providing for his newborn son. His first concern – one made known to the entire household by his heir’s fully functioning lungs – is to secure a wet nurse. Catherine had met and married her seafaring officer within days of meeting him. She had been selling jams and jellies for her church on market day when Thomas swept her off her feet. She fell wildly in love, and when he proposed she was delighted to finally be free of her aunt. When Thomas shipped out two weeks after marrying her, he promised to return. Four months later it was confirmed that all hands were lost at sea. It was at about that time she could not deny her swelling belly. Told by the midwife attending her that her child was stillborn, Catherine is beside herself with grief. Now, all alone, with nowhere to turn, she has no choice but to accept the position of wet nurse when it is offered. The earl’s entire household is charmed by Catherine and well pleased that she is able to bring peace and quiet as well as joy back to the manor. As Catherine and Thorne grieve for their spouses and tend to the young heir’s needs, the three of them begin to bond. They take walks, share meals, and read books together. They laugh again, which neither thought they would ever do…and they become friends. Then they kiss, and one night, when he discovers her self-pleasuring, they become much more. It is a magical time on the coast of England. Southport is a bustling harbor on the cusp of wondrous things, and Sefton Manor and its inhabitants are about to embrace it all.