2013, Tunis. After a demonstration, Pauline, a young French woman, is arrested and taken to La Manouba, the women’s prison. Within its walls, it is another time, a different world order, with rules that are revealed to her in a language she barely understands. Consigned to Pavilion D, a cell she shares with twenty-eight women, she has only been able to keep one book with her, Victor Hugo’s Les Contemplations. They are poems to hold on to. But soon, in the margins of this book, Pauline begins to write another story, that of the killers, thieves, and victims of judicial errors who tell her their truths over the course of the day. These are the stories of the women with whom she shares her daily life, who offer her their smiles, and teach her to remain strong and dignified no matter what happens.
Vibrant with humanity, Les Contemplées, a fiery autobiographical novel, provides an incredible portrait of a group of women united against the injustice of men.