The first time that Gordon meets Annie they make love in a park. Soon afterwards, on the 44th anniversary of D-Day, they are married. Gordon, though American-born, has never had a home; instead, he led a life of barren privilege, travelling through the capitals of Europe with his mother.
Over the course of a year in London, Gordon and Annie construct an idea of married life for themselves, until their long-delayed honeymoon finally takes them to Venice. But once there, the city's brilliance seems to distort rather than illuminate, and the story gathers an almost unbearable intensity before - in a single act of absurd but devastating vilolence - their bubble is pricked and the emptiness at the core of their gilded lives revealed.