For two couples honeymooning in Sorrento, the future is uncertain, but they are full of the promise of youth. The year is 1938 and the Munich crisis is just over - a relief for both Biff and Rosemary Banks and their new-found friends Konrad and Anna von Riegner. Biff is a pilot in the RAF and Konrad an Oberleutnant-zur-See in the German Kriegsmarine. Together they tour the Amalfi coast.
For Tim Roxham, a young railway policeman, and Fay Rossiter, the problems of relationships across the social divide in pre-war England, pale into insignificance when Mr Chamberlain's tired voice announces that the country is at war with Germany. Now it's not just Tim's love for the wealthy Fay that is threatened, but their very lives.
London, 1944: an atmosphere of unease pervades the city as the invasion of Europe looms. Meanwhile, John Fairfax, an American paratrooper, and Robbie Cochran, a New Zealand pilot in the RAF, are swept along by the urgency of the times as they meet and fall in love with two rather unexpected girls. Across the Channel, Walter Raus, an officer in the Waffen SS, prepares for the coming storm while his wife Inge, a devoted nurse, faces death at every turn thanks to the relentless Allied bombing.
When Jean Sinclair's parents are killed in an accident she travels from the US to Scotland to trace her family roots, despite the disapproval of her fiancé, Don. There she meets Adam Crawford, a handsome but arrogant landowner and, despite her initial dislike, has a tempestuous physical union with him at a glamorous highland ball.
There was no doubt in Lt. Mike Gibson’s mind that he was going to die. As a lieutenant in the Royal Army Medical Corps, death and carnage had been with him every day from the beaches of Normandy to the crossing of the Rhine. One moment eclipsed all others, in a forest clearing in Germany; where he had the experience of hell on earth. He owed his life to one woman, Lily de Howarth, the woman he adored. And now he was planning to kill her in the name of love.