When Sylvia Beach opens Shakespeare and Company in 1919, she has no idea that she and her new bookstore will change the course of literature itself. It's where some of the most important literary friendships of the 20th century are forged - none more so than the one between James Joyce and Sylvia herself. When Joyce's controversial novel Ulysses is banned, Beach takes a risk and publishes it under the auspices of Shakespeare and Company. But the future of her store is threatened when Ulysses' success brings other publishers to woo Joyce away. As she faces painful personal and financial crises, Sylvia must decide what Shakespeare and Company truly means to her.