Alfonso is a short novel set in Sydney between 1962 and 1971. The protagonist is a man from the northwest of Spain who migrates to Australia to escape poverty. When he arrives in Australia he confronts language problems, homesickness and isolation. He works as a carpenter and eventually buys an old house in Surry Hills, unaware of the cost and commitment associated with old houses and feuding neighbours. When the house is finished he meets a woman and they fall in love, but the woman leaves for England. The story then traces his search for love and in the process he finds a way to belong in his new country. More than a love story, this is a novella about the migrant experience in which all that is known is forfeited in the search for material security.