Jane Rose's upbringing means she's never had a proper home. Always on the move with her parents from army posting to colonial outpost. Even home - England - feels foreign to her when she first encounters it as a child.
When she meets fascinating, assured Ben she cannot help being drawn to him, entering, full of wonder, into a passionate affair over a long lazy summer. But Ben provides no home for Jane: too aware of his own beauty, he offers it to other women, propelling her into the arms of a safer, duller partner.
Eight years later their paths cross once more. Ben has a wife; Jane has a child. Then tragedy blows their world apart, and pushes them together. But obsessive love comes with a high price, as those around them discover, and as Jane herself begins, painfully, to learn . . .