This novel was inspired by the Grimke sisters of Charleston South Carolina who went against their upbringing and became out-spoken advocates, against slavery and for the equality of women. The story begins when Sarah Grimke is given ten year old Handful as a personal slave from her parents. She immediately wrote up her freedom papers. Her father tore up the papers and Sarah was forced to keep Handful. The story progresses through their complex relationship and Sarah’s struggle to shape her own destiny. The story includes many interesting characters and tells a compelling and historically accurate account of the struggles of both blacks and women in that era.