With separation from his family looming, the writer William Caldicott needs to find some respite. But when William receives a cryptic letter of farewell from his estranged brother James, further complications are only added. Along with the letter is the key to James' house in France. Sensing the potentially reformative aspect of such a break, William hesitantly takes the key and begins the search for his brother. He rapidly becomes embedded in the fabric of rural France, learning that rumours travel quicker than him, and that connections and secrets are paramount. He eventually finds the remarkable little house next to an abandoned castle with a view of an incredible fissured mountain. But as he delves deeper and deeper into his brother's strange life, William discovers things that will make him wish he stayed at home. First published in 1991, this is Dirk Bogarde's fourth novel.