A love affair does not confine its powers of seduction to those engaged in it, while the small, seaside village of San Lorenzo- above the Italian Riviera -- transmits an additional allure. The Curtises and the Sinclairs have spent several summers there- with their children Howard Curtis, a San Francisco publisher; Celine who has a ""cinquicento Face""; Philip Sinclair, a painter of perhaps more temperament than talent; and Prudence who stabilizes him. But this summer there is a political restlessness in the air as well as the sirocco; talk of communist agitation becomes an unsettling reality, and Howard is a minor casualty of a street fight in Turin. At home, differences of opinion between Howard and Celine are sharper particularly over the dismissal of a governess. Celine, already aware of the attraction she holds for Philip, goes to join him in Venice- and in a seedy albergo they experience the exclusive pleasure of each other while Howard, at home, has a shamefaced affair with the Belgian successor to the governess he fired. A general strike puts a stop to all of this; Celine, worried about her children, is anxious to return- her love for Philip faltering in the knowledge that she can never be more than a part of his life and his for her fading a little as he goes back to the settled assurance of his life with Prudence.... A diversion which is amusing, inviting and discreet, this combines many pleasant amenities of style with its improprieties of conduct.