It is 1628, Charles 1 is on the throne, and the British Crown is finally taking control of Ulster.Returning to his rooms one night, Alexander Seaton is shocked to find a stranger standing there a man who could be his double. His name is Sean O'Neill, and he carries a plea for help from Maeve O'Neill, forbidding matriarch of Alexander's mother's family in Ireland. All those who bear their blood have been placed under a poet's curse one by one they are going to die. Only Alexander is immune, his O'Neill heritage a secret from all but his closest family. Alexander travels to Ulster, to find himself at the heart of a family divided by secrets and bitter resentments. As he seeks out the author of the curse, he becomes increasingly embroiled in the conflict until confronted with murder within his own family his liberty and, finally, his life, are at stake.