Paris, 1894. In a moment of impulse, Lisette Decourt flees her home and family on the eve of her marriage to a man who has betrayed her. She attaches herself to a travelling "Lanternist", Daniel Shaw, whose "Magic Lantern" show is a precursor of silent movies. Lisette is fascinated by Daniel's art and, though adamant that she will never fall in love again, is irresistibly attracted to the magnetic Englishman.
In 17th century Rotterdam, newly orphaned Saskia is employed as a lady's maid to Vrouw Gibbons. Capable and hard-working, it soon becomes apparent that her talent for the manufacture of beauty products - a legacy from her mother - far exceeds her lowly status. She catches the eye of Grinling Gibbons, her employers' only son, and of his English friend, Robert Harding. When the Gibbons family decides to return to England, Saskia goes with them, and in time the opportunity arises for her to set up in business.
When Anna Harvik goes to Norway in 1946 this beautiful country is still recovering from five cruel years of Nazi Occupation. Her late husband was a pilot in the Royal Norwegian Air Force and she has come to visit his homeland and meet his family, in spite of being in doubt about how she will be received. She stays with Molly, who with other English war-brides makes her welcome.
"most interesting "