'It was inevitable: the scent of bitter almonds always reminded him of the fate of unrequited love.' Florentino Ariza is a hopeless romantic who falls passionately for the beautiful Fermina Daza. Instead Fermina marries a distinguished doctor, while Florentino can only wait silently for her. He can never forget his first and only true love. Then, fifty-one years, nine months and four days later, Fermina's husband dies unexpectedly. At last Florentino has another chance to declare his feelings and discovers if a passion that has endured for half a century will remain unrequited, in a rich, fantastic and humane celebration of love in all its many forms.