A nerdy proofreader from England who, thanks to his good friend Froggy, finds himself staying  
alone at Betty Meeks's  bed-and-breakfast in rural Georgia.  Pathologically shy, and preoccupied  
with a sick wife back home who is a serial adulterer, Charlie tells Froggy that he is unwilling - and
unable - to speak a single word to the strangers inhabiting this lodge.  So Froggy tells Betty that
     
Charlie is a foreigner who cannot speak English.  Little does Charlie know that, far from encouraging
people to leave him alone, his status as an inscrutable, exotic, non-comprehending alien makes him
the center of attention.  Depending on who talks to him, he is a trusted confidante, a fascinating
trinket, an inadvertent spy, an ardent pupil - and, to some, a threat.   Before he knows it, Charlie is
taking on the Ku Klux Klan in order to save Betty's lodge.
Not only does Charlie's visit give him a new
lease on life, but the people whose lives he touches are likewise transformed such that the good are
redeemed - and the evil are revealed.