After a tour of combat abroad, a young man determined to keep to himself is drawn into the dramas of his East Village neighbors
World War II veteran Richard Stone is attempting to transition back into normal life. An aspiring writer, he’s surviving off the GI Bill and the help of friends. Living free of attachments and responsibilities, he thinks, is the best way to defend himself from the world’s pain, like his unhappy upbringing or his best friend’s death in the war.
But his neighborhood on Second Avenue won’t permit such seclusion. The characters around Richard include a lonely poet, an unhappy literary couple, and a widower who can’t stop thinking about the plight of Europe’s Jews. Gradually they pull Richard into their lives, and even introduce him to the lovely Jemmy Gordon—but life and happiness are not so simple.