The novel starts in an old, big and silent house in Cennethisar which is a part of Gebze. The owner of the house is an old, lonely and depressed woman named Fatma Hanim who is also referred to as grandmother and Buyukhanim in the novel. Recep who is a dwarf is responsible for everything related to the house such as feeding Buyukhanim, taking her to and from bed, cleaning the house, washing the dishes, and doing the shopping for the house. The three grandchildren of Buyukhanim will come to visit her for a week the next day. All the preparation for their arrival has been made.Fatma Hanim thinks about her grandchildren in her bed at night. She plans how and what she is going to talk to them when they arrive. Then she starts to think of the past. She remembers her late husband Selahattin Bey. Dr. Selahattin Bey is a man of free mind. He does not like the government of Committee of Union and Progress which is a political party. Therefore he is forced to go to an exile in Gebze leaving Istanbul behind. The house where Fatma Hanim lives now has been made in those days in exile. During their marriage, he dedicated his life to working on a massive encyclopedia that he claimed would enlighten the nation, freeing its people from, among other things, what he saw as a foolish belief in God. His behavior, as Fatma relates, ultimately drove away all of his patients.The grandchildren arrives on the day they are supposed to come. The eldest one is Faruk who is a historian. He works as an associate professor at the university. Nilgun is a student of sociology. She is a revolutionist. Metin is a high school student. He dreams of going to America and getting rich there. While they talk, Recep prepares the dinner table. After the dinner, Faruk and Nilgun start a long conversation. Metin goes out and finds his friend Vedat. They join in a group of rich youths. Metin falls in love with a girl in this group whose name is Ceylan...Nobel Prize in literature in 2006.