Peter Newman's first true love is sex, which eventually leads to a youthful indiscretion. This, in turn, generates an intense desire to escape his current life. At the age of eighteen he becomes a merchant seaman and finds his second true love-travel. Upon his return from the sea, Peter enrolls at Berkeley, where he discovers his third true love-architecture. Upon graduation he wins a coveted Traveling Fellowship, which enables him to pursue his three true loves.
This is the story of Peter Newman's fellowship year-a year filled with travel, adventure, and romance. Together with a college friend, Peter visits every major architectural monument, from the classic ruins and great cathedrals of Europe to the historic mosques and pyramids in the Middle East. They spend more than a year exploring dozens of countries, while experiencing exotic adventures, bureaucratic entanglements, and thrilling amorous episodes. In the rousing conclusion several romantic partners unexpectedly arrive in Paris at the same time, and Peter must choose his one true love.
In a narrative filled with humor, romance, and the frustrations of traveling through post-war Europe our hero survives his fellowship year having learned much about his three true loves, but far more about himself.