When a stranger from Dublin comes to his coastal village looking for a boat ride to the Great Blasket Island, Tom McBride isn’t anxious for the job. He has enough to handle, working the farm that will one day be his inheritance, and dealing with a contentious father who’s threatening to withhold it. The stranger is hard to refuse, though; he’s on a mission from the prime minister. Tom agrees to the trip, curious about the government’s interest in such a desolate spot. Rising from the sea like a mountain, the Great Blasket is a place of legends, its people mysterious and strange. Steering his uncle’s fishing boat towards it, Tom thinks he’s prepared for whatever it has to offer, but nothing could prepare him for Brigid O’Sullivan.
Dark-eyed and raven-haired, Brigid is the only young woman left among the aging inhabitants of her tiny Blasket village. With most of its population lost to emigration or the unforgiving sea, the island has grown more isolated and its way of life ever more dangerous. The Irish government plans to evacuate everyone to the mainland, but Brigid refuses to give up on her home. For her, the Blasket is a place of magic and power. She thinks its wild isolation fits with her own strange spirit and that she is better off where she is, but from the minute he lays eyes on her, Tom is determined to convince her otherwise.
Irresistibly drawn to him, Brigid soon finds herself torn between the solitary life she thought she wanted and the one offered by the man she loves. Both choices come with loss and grief attached, but when tragedy strikes, changing everything in an instant, she discovers the greatest heartbreak could be never getting to choose at all.