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After living for several years in France and the Caribbean, Jamil returns to his homeland a broken man. He ends up finding temporary work in a bookshop in the heart of Tunis. Here he meets and is attracted to Aïcha, a widow fifteen years his senior whose son, Tarek, owns the bookshop. Shaken by her feelings for Jamil, Aïcha needs to distance herself and she moves out of the apartment situated above the bookshop. Leïla, Tarek’s young wife, is bored by married life and leaves her husband to pursue a singing career. When Tarek sinks into depression, Aïcha returns home. Jamil and Aïcha become close over the months that follow, but their attraction for each other is never fully acted upon due to social and moral pressures. Leïla, five-months pregnant, wants to get back together with Tarek, who she misses. Jamil and Aïcha arrange for the young couple to accidentally bump into each other during a recital given in a cathedral. Once the couple is back together, Jamil quits his job and returns to his childhood home. He wants to reconnect with his father who he had walked out on after a violent argument over his decision to leave the country.