To Arthur Fraser, a young Englishman, Sardinia in 1960 is perfect. It’s an island filled with Roman ruins, exotic scenery, local customs, and morally traditional values-he loves everything. To assimilate into the strange and belong to a society different from his own has always been his desire.
Arthur arrives in the resort town of Alghero to work as a representative for a tourist company. His ambition is to find a Sard girl for himself. He is quickly thwarted, though, by the unorthodox beliefs of the inhabitants. Unmarried couples cannot meet without chaperones, and anyone with “”continental”” attitudes is immoral. Arthur quickly learns that dating is fraught with real dangers.
When Arthur finally falls in love with Anna, a Sard girl, he discovers that she lives in Rome and is no longer accepted at home. But she then falls in love with one of his best friends, and Arthur becomes irrationally obsessed. He incessantly schemes about winning back her affections, despite her efforts to dissuade him.