Post-war England is gripped by Coronation fever. At The Palace, a grand hotel owned for generations by the King family, the eldest daughter, Libby, looks forward to the new era with excitement as she prepares to host her first function as the proprietor. As the citizens of Kingshaven gather for The Palace's Coronation party, events are set in motion that have consequences stretching far into the future.
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It is 1969 and eight-year-old Julia Allsop wants to be a princess. But a fairytale wedding doesn't guarantee happily ever after, and Julia will discover that life is more complicated than dreams of love - whatever love means... Nineteen-year-old would-be feminist Iris Quinn hopes to carve out a successful career, but London in the 1970s is full of temptations, and a passionate clandestine affair threatens to destroy everything she believes in.
It’s 1993 and the small seaside town of Kingshaven is looking picture perfect when the peace is suddenly shattered by the blast of a bomb that has lain hidden since the war. It is not the town’s only long-buried secret. In London, graduate Cat Brown sees the story unfolding on the news. In Rome, Iris Quinn feels the tug of the place she ran away from 30 years before. In the now crumbling Palace Hotel, disturbing memories are triggered for grande-dame Liliana King.