‘A very fine book… It’s witty and sharp and reads like something by Barbara Pym or Anita Brookner, without ever feeling like a pastiche’ – David Nicholls
1957, the suburbs of South East London. Jean Swinney is a journalist on a local paper, trapped in a life of duty and disappointment from which there is no likelihood of escape. When a young woman, Gretchen Tilbury, contacts the paper to claim that her daughter is the result of a virgin birth, it is down to Jean to discover whether she is a miracle or a fraud.
As the investigation turns her quiet life inside out, Jean is suddenly given an unexpected chance at friendship, love and - possibly - happiness. But there will, inevitably, be a price to pay.