Britain is in the grip of a chilling recession... falling wages, rising prices, civil unrest - only the bankers are smiling. It's 1783 and Ross Poldark returns from the American War of Independence to his beloved Cornwall to find his world in ruins: his father dead, the family mine long since closed, his house wrecked and his sweetheart pledged to marry his cousin. But Ross finds that hope and love can be found when you are least expecting it in the wild but beautiful Cornish landscape.
The Poldarks look forward to life together in peace, but a plea from his old army colonel, Ned Despard, compels Ross to the capital. Arriving in London, he finds a city gripped with paranoia, and is determined to save Ned from the conspiracy that imprisoned him.
As George expands his power through a shady alliance, the Poldarks become caught in a deadly web.
Ross's tenacity in helping Ned bears fruit, but not without cost. Hanson’s presence in Cornwall raises suspicion and as Demelza wrestles with how best to equip the community to look after itself, Morwenna lends herself to the cause and finds new hope.
Ralph seeks to ruin Ned as rebellion stirs and the Poldarks are trapped in the middle.
George’s cabal moves to ruin the Poldarks, and Morwenna wrestles with a heavy decision.
Ross fights for Ned’s life as Demelza uncovers betrayal and the young lovers take flight for a future together.
Ross discovers a French plot, and George finds himself at the mercy of Joseph and Ralph.
With the fate of his nation in the balance, Ross must gamble everything to protect his country and those he loves.