Alice Lee, middle-aged and unmarried, is the only volunteer when the minister asks his congregation to help young Zebediah Bailey. Zeb is in prison for a ghastly crime, and the townspeople would rather forget than forgive this local lad who lost his way. Alice dutifully writes to him every week, sending him sweets from her shop: Alice Lee's Confectionary. She won't admit she's lonely, but since her parents deaths, making and selling sweets has become her whole world. Then Zeb comes out of gaol and Alice agrees to take him in, much to the horror of her neighbours. What develops between them is unexpected - intense and bittersweet.