Lucy Honeychurch, an upper middle class girl, and her cousin, Charlotte, travel from England to Italy on vacation. While on the trip, the two women share a guest house with a man and his son George Emmerson. After switching rooms to offer the women a better view overlooking the scenic river, the Emmersons and Honeychurches get to know each other better. Mr. Emmerson suggests that Lucy and George may be a good match for each other.
The governess begins seeing a man around the house, and a woman down by the lake. The maid of the house tells the governess that the descriptions sound like the former governess and the valet. Strange things begin to happen, leading the governess to believe that the family is haunted. She is convinced that the ghosts are pandering to the children; yet the children deny being able to see or hear anything unusual.
Fanny Hill is the first erotic novel ever published and follows the character of Fanny Hill through her adolescent career in prostitution. This novel explores concepts in, not only prostitution, but different sexual fantasies including dominant/submissive relationships, rape fantasies, mutual masturbation, and whether or not it is possible to have sex for pleasure, without love.