Following the death of her mother at an early age, Isabella Carroll was brought up by her wealthy Dublin aunt and uncle. The latter are keen to climb the ranks of Dublin society by making a suitably 'good' marriage for their niece. Isabella, however, is drawn to stories of her father who made his money on the plantations of Saint-Domingue, and to the idea of the "Wild Geese," the Irish brigades who left their homes in search of a better life in France. When her aunt tries to set Isabella up with the wealthy but louche Gregory Murtogh, then the coldly calculating Mr M'Guire, Isabella decides to take her fate into her own hands. To the glee of the Dublin gossipmongers, Isabella sets off for Paris under the protection of the handsome but poor Dr Connor. But when she finally meets her father, she is in for a rude awakening about the source of his wealth. Added to that is the cool reception she receives from her father's cousin and her daughter, two women who want to exploit Isabella's innocence and idealism and gain access to her inheritance.