The concept of a story within a story has been done before. However, Elif has done it brilliantly. With two stories mirroring one another. One set in modern times and the other set in the thirteenth century. Ella Rubenstein is a forty year old woman, stuck in an unhappy marriage. She is given the chance to read a story written by a man named Aziz Zahara. She starts seeing a pattern between the protagonist in the story she is reading an herself. Eventually, she realizes that she was set free, like the protagonist in the story. The book touches upon ancient philosophy and discusses the concept of the love within all of us.