`Janie, this is Alex Oliver who's just moved into the house opposite, Alex, this is my best friend Janie Orsini…'Jane felt a warm glow of affection for her. How lovely that Virginia still thought of her as her best friend…'Jane had what her friends regarded as a colourful past culminating in a a sensationally brief marriage and subsequent liaison with an Italian Count. But living with Giorgio had turned out to be far from easy. It was not just that he was given to sulks, it was also his ambiguous attitude to his baby son.Virginia on the other hand had a `perfect' marriage to the Hon. Robin Askew. It was, of course, unsatisfactory that his income had to be so reliant on gambling, and maybe he did take her rather for granted.And there was lovable Alex with his chronically ill wife who seemed badly in need of comforting though whether by Virginia or Jane was open to question. In any case he seemed to have his hands full with Sandra, who was becoming increasingly exasperated with her bisexual husband Martin.This is the recipe for a sophisticated tale of sexual intrigue, moral confusion and betrayal. With a keen eye for the varieties of human fallibility, Anne Dunhill, the author of the bestselling A Darker Shade of Love, has written a compulsively readable account of the disastrous consequences of surrendering to one's most secret passions.