Trapped in a London flat, Beth remembers a transgressive love affair in 1960s Paris. The most famous writer in Russia takes his last breath in a stationmaster's cottage, miles from Moscow. A father, finally free of his daughter's demands,embarks on a long swim from his Canadian lakeside retreat. And in the grandest house of all, Danni the Polish housekeeper catches the eye of an enigmatic visitor. Rose Tremain awakens the senses in this diverse collection of short stories. In her precise yet sensuous style she lays bare the soul of her characters- the admirable, the embarrassing, the unfulfilled, the sexy and the adorable - to uncover a dazzling range of human emotions and desires.