Samson Greene, a young and popular professor at Columbia University, is found wandering in the Nevada desert. When his wife, Anna, comes to take him home, she finds a man who remembers nothing, not even his own name. The removal of a small brain tumour saves his life, but his memories beyond the age of twelve are permanently lost. Here is the story of a strikingly intelligent, sensitive man returned to a world in which everything is strange and new. An emigrant in his own life, he is set free from everything and everyone who once defined him. Samson believes he has nothing left to lose. So, when a charismatic scientist asks him to participate in a bold experiment, Samson agrees. What he gains is nothing short of the beautifully painful revelation of what it is to be a human being.