Based on the diary of an ancestor, Sister Sarah Anne Terrot who was one of Florence Nightingale's thirty-eight nurses in the Crimea, this is- save for the romantic sequences- true. And there's a great deal of gallantry and drama in this story of Sarah Anne's friend, Elizabeth Wheeler, young, impulsive, hotheaded and passionately dedicated to her work. With MacLean, the young doctor with whom she was in love, Elizabeth's fight to give the men the food which might save their lives, to relieve the conditions in the cholera wards which were a charnel house, finally gained ground. In this she ran up against the opposition of Menzies, the doctor in charge, of Florence Nightingale, and here the Lady with the Lamp carries no sentimental aura, but is a cold, practical, expedient administrator, playing a guarded game with officialdom to secure the success of her mission at the expense of loyalty to her nurses. Elizabeth faces final heartbreak when an indiscreet letter home to an aunt arouses public protest, leads to her trial, dismissal and her renunciation of MacLean... A tragic and spirited story.