Moravia in his final novel manages to creat a definitive portrait of Italy, as in his earlier works he showed the essence of Fascist Italy.
Written in the form of a conversation between an interlocutor and the herione, Desideria, a woman in full rebellion against her family, her class, and official morality.
Often horrifying, often funny, Desideria's no-holds-barred account of her life and her erotic adventures is compelling. Nothing is simplified, no part of life is glossed over. The reader follows Desideria through frantic sexual escapades, political involvements - all the expressions of her despair. The result is a novel that is both a triumph of storytelling and a masterful account of what has gone wrong in our society.