In a violent post-apocalyptic society, the drifter Eli has been wandering to west across North America for the last thirty years reading a unique book that he brings with him. He survives hunting small animals and seeking goods in destroyed houses and vehicles to trade in villages for water and supplies. When he reaches the village ruled by the powerful mobster Carnegie, the man offers a job to Eli to join his gang. Carnegie presses his blind lover Claudia to send her daughter Solara to convince Eli spending the night with him. The girl sees the book of Eli, and when Carnegie beats up on Claudia, she reveals that Eli has the sought book. Carnegie sends his gang to take the book from Eli, but the man is up for protecting the book with his life.