Juanita de Leon, having just completed her traditional convent education, looks forward to her grand ba (coming out party) and dreams of gallant proposals in moonlit gardens. Reality holds quite another fate in store. Joseph Bonaparte has just been placed on the Spanish throne, the English have come to fight the French on Spanish soil, and the native peasants have seized the opportunity to revolt against their patrones. Amid this hectic scene of chaos and bloodshed, Juanita's dreams of grandeur vanish, only to be replaced eventually by more substantial stuff. Her home attacked, her possessions gone, she is given in marriage to an English major with whom a prior brief meeting had been memorable. With her Harry Smith, Juanita gains maturity as she is thrown into undreamed of encounters with foreigners and foreign experience, all culminating in an abiding and deepening love for her husband. An involved but interesting historical romance.