When pretty Sara Pallister's father dies leaving his farm bankrupt, she is begrudgingly taken in by her narrow-minded uncle and aunt in the mining village of Whitton Grange. Made to pay her way, Sara is hired out to Dolly Sergeant's grocer's shop where she meets funny, bashful Raymond Kirkup and his warm-hearted aunt Louie. It is through Raymond that she meets the family that is to change her life: the exotic and extrovert Italian Dimarcos who own the popular ice-cream parlour, and finds herself irresistibly drawn to leather-jacketed, motorbike-riding Joe Dimarco. But neither of their families approves the love-match and strive to keep them apart. As the shadows of the Second World War gather and the growing hostility to the Italians erupts into violence, Sara and Joe's passionate love seems doomed. With its vivid backdrop of a pit-town strained by the tensions of war, The Darkening Skies is a vibrant and moving story of conflicting loyalties, passions and cultures. The Darkening Skies follows the award-nominated The Hungry Hills in the Durham Mining Trilogy.