We know the brilliant writer of the Rougon-Macquart series and the committed author of the open letter "J'accuse...!" but what do we know about his private life? Who were the women in his life? How did they help him to accomplish his work? At what sacrifice? A remarkable fresco that takes us back to the end of the 19th century, to the heart of an ever-changing France and the city of Paris, full of artists and workers.