When her parents die from fever, Lady Sarah Montgomery Baird Watson-Wentworth has to leave India, a land she was born and raised in, and travel to England for the first time. Finding it almost impossible to adjust to London society, Sarah flees to the county of Cheshire and the country estate of Grangeback that borders the village of Stickleback Hollow. A place filled with oddballs, eccentrics and more suspicious characters than you can shake a stick at, Sarah feels more at home in the sleepy little village than she ever did in the big city, however, even sleepy little villages have mysteries that must be solved.
It's All Hallows' Eve in Stickleback Hollow and the annual ball at Tatton Park is being held. It is Sarah's first formal engagement since leaving London, and she isn't looking forward to it - especially when the people she thinks of as friends are not invited. The veil between the spirit and living worlds is at its thinnest, and evil forces seem to be lurking everywhere.