With the death of her father, chief of the O'Malley clan, 18 year old Grania proves to the astonishment of her clansmen and competitors that she is fully capable of assuming the duties of Chieftain despite her youth and sex. The time is the early sixteenth century and the spirit in western Ireland, divided by scores of clan allegiances, rises in single rebellion against the injustices of the English emissaries. Plunging into piracy and pillage, Grania hoists the O'Mally banner on many an English sloop. The death of her dearly beloved husband inspires further vengeance but her second marriage tempers her hatred somewhat and focuses it not on Elizabeth but more directly on the Queen's evil advisors. Twice captured, twice freed, Grania and the great Queen finally meet and dramatically reach an understanding. Filled with incident and action covering a full lifespan, the saga deals with a unique and intriguing aspect of history although its heroine regrettably remains at some distance from us throughout.