It is 1947, the worst winter in England since records began, and even the sea is frozen. For the women living in the little fishing port of Bexham, the chronic lack of everything from fuel to food has left them reeling. When American Waldo Astley arrives he finds the village filled, not just with grumbling residents, but with frustrated wives and mothers, forced back behind their stoves after the joy of the victory for which they fought so hard.
But Waldo is no ordinary character and he has a dramatic effect on all the residents. For Judy, whose marriage has been badly affected by years of separation; for Rusty, recovering from a miscarriage; for Mathilda, a single mother, and for Meggie, dealing with her ordeals as a secret agent. Waldo Astley is not just a breath of fresh air - but the wind off the sea.