Assertive and sensual, Bertha Ley finds herself carries away by a passion for Edward Craddock, a young man she has known since childhood. She sees in marriage to him a chance to escape from the quiet life she leads with her aunt - and to experience true love. But passionate and full of life, she discovers that little in her marriage to the dutiful and sensible Edward meets her expectations. And as passion dies, she finds herself trapped in a loveless, oppressive marriage. Originally rejected by publishers, Mrs. Craddock was first published only on condition that certain "shocking" passages were removed. It was thirty years before the full text could be published.