On the outskirts of a small town in Bengal, a family live in solitude in their vast new house. Here, swathed in silence, a widower struggles with feelings for an unmarried cousin while his motherless daughter Bakul runs wild with Mukunda, an orphan of unknown caste adopted by the family. Confined at the top of the house, the matriarch goes slowly mad, while her husband shapes and reshapes his glorious garden.As Mukunda and Bakul grow, their intense closeness matures into something else and Mukunda is banished to Calcutta. Although he prospers in the turbulent years after Partition, his thoughts are all of what was once his home - and he knows that he must return. This is a love story, as intricate as it is enchanting, about two people who find each other when abandoned by everyone else.