In the economic boom following the Second World War, Cyril Conroy’s real estate investments take his family from poverty to enormous wealth. With it he buys the Dutch House, a lavish mansion in the Philadelphia suburbs.
Meant as a surprise for his wife, the house sets in motion the undoing of everyone he loves. Danny Conroy grows up in the opulence of the Dutch House. Though his father is distant and his mother is absent, Danny has his beloved sister Maeve: Maeve, with her wall of black hair, her wit, her brilliance.
The siblings grow and change as life plays out under the watchful eyes of the house’s former owners, in the frames of their oil paintings. Then one day their father brings home Andrea, a new stepmother. Though they cannot know it, her arrival to the Dutch House sows the seed of the defining loss of Danny and Maeve’s lives: exiled from the house and tossed back into the poverty from which their family rose, Danny and Maeve have only each other to count on.