On a late November afternoon Saleh Omar arrives at Gatwick Airport from Zanzibar, an island in the Indian Ocean.
With him he has a small bag in which there lies his most precious possession - a mahogany box containing incense.
He used to own a furniture shop, have a house and be a husband and father.
Now he is an asylum seeker from paradise. Silence his only protection. Meanwhile Latif Mahmud, someone intimately connected with Saleh's past, lives quietly alone in his London flat.
When Saleh and Latif meet in an English seaside town, a story is unravelled.
It is a story of love and betrayal, of seduction and of possession, and of a people trying to find stability amidst the maelstrom of their times.