6 December 2013. It is a searing hot day in Johannesburg. Gin has returned to the city of her birth to throw a party for her mother's eightieth birthday.
She is determined, with lists and meals and flower arrangements, to show that she has become a fully capable woman.
She knows, deep down, her mother will only ever see a lost cause. Meanwhile outside, crowds of citizens and the world's media have gathered to hear the expected announcement: Nelson Mandela has died. Set across the course of a single momentous day and narrated by a chorus of voices, Fiona Melrose's second novel is a hymn to an extraordinary city and its people, an ambitious homage to Virginia Woolf's Mrs Dalloway, and a devastating personal and political manifesto on mothers and daughters, justice and love. 'Beautifully observed' Mail on Sunday'Woolf produced blooms that are impossible to emulate.
Johannesburg provides evidence of a novelist who can grow inimitable flowers herself' Spectator