Nazneem is a young Bangladeshi woman who arrives in London during the 1980s. She leaves behind her beloved sister and home, for an arranged marriage and a new life. In a loveless marriage to the middle aged Chanu, she feels trapped within the four walls of her flat in East London. She begins to fear that her soul is quietly dying. Meanwhile, her sister Hasina, continues to live a carefree life back in Bangladesh. Nazneen struggles to accept her lifestyle and tries to keep her head down in spite of life's blows. She soon discovers that life cannot be avoided and she is forced to confront life the day that the hotheaded young Karim comes knocking at her door.