Gladys grows up in a large family, convinced she is the odd one out, especially compared with pretty Rita, the sister closest to her. Then elder brother Jim invents a new game he calls the Courage Game, in which all seven of the children will be tested for their ability to keep a stiff upper lip.
Little does she know, she'll recall this game years later, comparing his little hand-made badges to those handed out by the W.S.P.U., the suffragettes. The poverty of Ireland in the 1890s is capped by the terrible conditions of the Birmingham slums where she first works as a teacher.
Heartsick at the hardship she sees all around her, she's driven to change it, but only the Pankhursts seem to offer any hope of a woman’s voice being heard - providing they win the right to vote, that is. Enthusiastically, Gladys throws herself in, juggling her job, her burgeoning love life and her work for the suffragettes. But how long can one woman keep walking such a line without losing her balance?