When attractive, impulsive English widow Lilia takes a holiday in Italy, she causes a scandal by marrying Gino, a dashing and highly unsuitable Italian 12 years her junior. Her prim, snobbish in-laws make no attempt to hide their disapproval, and when Lilia's decision eventually brings disaster, her English relatives embark on an expedition to face the uncouth foreigner.
E. M. Forster’s first novel explores the comic and tragic effects of culture clash between insular, provincial British personalities and sensual Italian culture and atmosphere. Lilia Herriton, an impulsive 33-year-old widow from London, travels to Tuscany, where she falls in love with both Italy and the handsome, carefree Gino Carelli, a dentist’s son 12 years her junior. When news reaches the snobbish Herriton family that Lilia intends to marry again, this time to an unsuitable Italian, the domineering Mrs. Herriton sends her son, Philip, to prevent the catastrophe - but he arrives too late.
This brilliant novel depicts cultural clashes between a middle-class English family and a penniless Italian. His marriage to a young widow from Sawston leads to a tumultuous situation within the family.