Based on the autobiographical novel by Israeli author Amos Oz. Oz's family moved to what was then called Palestine in the 1930s to escape Nazi persecution. As a boy he watched his mother, Fania, struggle with depression, fear, and loneliness, and saw how she used poetry and stories to create hope for herself. But even as Israel's independence was finally recognized after the war, Fania slipped deeper into a despair where even her son could not reach her. But her lessons helped start him on the path to being a writer.