A girl, Nell was convinced, should have a good time at seventeen, have met her true love at eighteen, be engaged at nine, and marry at twenty-one. While her mother regards the Locarno Dancehall as a den of iniquity, for seventeen-year-old, shop-girl, Nell McClusky, it's the centre of the universe. Where else is she going to meet the man of her dreams who'll take her away from the hum-drum realities of life on a council estate in 1950s Edinburgh? At first Alistair Rutherford doesn't look that promising. He dresses more like a student than Nell's idol, Buddy Holly. But Alistair comes from a wealthy family and is studying to be a lawyer, two things that mean that Nell soon has plans to leave her dance hall days far behind her. But the reality of marriage is far different to Nell's romantic notions...