Kadija is the music-loving daughter of a guardian of the sacred manuscripts of the ancient city of Timbuktu, Mali. Ali is a former shepherd boy, trained as a warrior for Allah. Tonight, the Islamist rebels are coming for Timbuktu. They will install a harsh regime of law and tear apart the peaceful world within the mud walls of the city. Television, football, radios, even music, will be banned. Kadija refuses to let go of her former life. And something in her defiance draws Ali to her. Which path will he choose?