Thirteen year old Eliza lives with her family in Manchester within sight of the mill where her father works as a spinner. Eliza hates the mill and wishes that they could live in the countryside where her grandfather was born. But it’s 1842, times are hard and Eliza is forced to take a job in the carding room to help her family. When her father joins the Chartists her mother is aghast, fearing he could lose his job. That summer riots break out in the north and the Chartists are blamed. What does the future hold for Eliza now? Will she realize her dream or will she always be a mill girl?