In 1938 the Redlich family flees to Kenya from Leobschtz (in Silesia), Nazi Germany, to escape the increasing persecution of the Jews. Walter, a former lawyer, finds work as a farm manager and sends for his family. His wife Jettel has trouble adjusting to life in Africa, although their daughter Regina quickly adapts to her new environment, easily learning the language of the country and showing interest in local culture. Regina soon forms a close friendship with the farm's cook, Owuor. When war breaks out, the British round up all German citizens, and hold them, whether Jew or gentile, separating men from women. The Redlichs' marriage begins to deteriorate. Jettel sleeps with a German-speaking British soldier to secure work and a home on a farm for the family, and Regina and Walter both find out. Walter decides to join the British army and wants Jettel to go to Nairobi with him, but she refuses and stays to run the farm with Owuor. Regina is sent to an English boarding school, and is kept there for years, only being able to come back every so often during the harvest season. During this time, Jettel and Ssskind develop a relationship (whether they slept together or not is implied but never mentioned). Walter comes back from the war, and states that the English army's policy is to send all soldiers and their families back home. Jettel refuses to go with him, saying the farm needs her. Eventually their relationship rekindles itself, and Jettel allows Walter to decide whether or not they should leave. Walter applies for a position as a judge in post-war Germany. The final scene shows Walter, Regina, and Jettel traveling on an African train, as the train stops, and an African woman offers Jettel a banana, only to show her how much Africa meant to her.