"In a remote clinic in 18th-century Italy, a lonely girl writes to her mother. She tells of pale English aristocrats and mysterious Russian nobles. She tells of intrigues and secrets, and strange faceless figures that rise from the sea. And she tells about the enigmatic Mrs Pond, who arrives with her husband and her physician. What she doesn't tell her mother is the truth that everyone knows and no one says - that the only people who come here do so to die" -- Cover verso.