All-American teenager Susan Slade (Connie Stevens) indulges in a shipboard romance with a handsome, wealthy young fellow (Grant Williams), whose name – appropriately – is Conn.
When the voyage is over, he promises undying love and promptly takes off to pursue his love of mountain climbing and scale Mt McKinley in Alaska.
When a doctor tells Susan she is pregnant, she frantically tries to call Conn to the altar. But the mountain has killed him.
A suicide attempt fails and Susan’s folks whisk her out of the country. Because of a heart condition that Susan and her mother (Dorothy McGuire) are unaware of, mining engineer Roger Slade (Lloyd Nolan) isn’t supposed to be working, but he takes a two-year job in Guatemala anyway.
That way, the family can pretend Mrs Slade has the baby and everything will be dandy when they return to their California ocean-front home and social whirl.
The plot thickens when Dad’s heart quits. Mum and Susan return to the States with the baby, and Susan pretends (never convincingly) that the little fellow is “my baby . . . my baby . . . brother.”
Both Mum and wealthy old friends the Corbetts (Brian Aherne and Natalie Schafer) think a match between Susan and their son Wells (Bert Convy) would be just the thing.
But Susan doesn’t love the guy, and wouldn’t think of marrying him without Telling All.
Her white knight is Hoyt Brecker (Troy Donahue), a poverty-stricken horse handler. Hoyt is the son of a man who hanged himself after being convicted of embezzlement (from Corbett, of course).
Susan’s illegitimate infant eventually sets himself on fire with granny’s cigarette lighter and is saved from death by Hoyt, which inadvertently brings about a happy ending all round.