When the city of Horneville is destroyed on the eve of a huge gay mardis gras, Mikey Brown – the feisty, sexy and dynamic host of a Christian shopping channel – knows exactly what she needs to do. Taking her sons with her, she sets out on a grand mercy mission. The journey is more than a flood clean-up for Mikey – she wants to save the city and teach the gays a lesson. Her husband was lost to her after attempting to -mission' to this same festival and this is her chance to lay the past to rest. Mustard – an enthusiastic, ebullient, 8 year old – doesn't believe his father is dead. In fact, he is determined to find him and knows that Horneville is the place to start looking. If anyone can bring him back, Mustard can.

Down in the city, the floodwater surrounding the Horneville City Hospital is steadily rising, turning what has been a place of refuge into a disaster zone. Deep in the hospital chaos, Nurse Gina Francson is forced to make a life and death decision with shattering repercussions.

The arrival of Mikey's little troupe helps Gina find hope in the most unlikely places.

Surprising, revelatory and utterly original, Floodline tells of the unexpected salvation that can be found on the edge of disaster. In this extraordinary novel, award-winning author Kathryn Heyman addresses hot topics of today - natural disasters, religion, politics, homophobia, evangelism, family, euthanasia - with stirring imagination and authenticity.

The inspiration for Floodline came in the aftermath of real-life natural disaster Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Kathryn Heyman explains, 'A group of medical staff in the city's main hospital were forced to make a series of seemingly impossible ethical decisions. I'd read a report on the events, and the court manuscripts that resulted, and was completely compelled by the situation. The idea of the impossible ethical choice is one that contemporary philosophers return to, and it's in my creative DNA. In the midst of thinking about this choice, and a novel which explored it, the Queensland floods started. So then I knew I had my setting..."

Kathryn Heyman is an acclaimed author of four previous novels, including The Accomplice and Captain Starlight's Apprentice, published internationally and in translation. She has received an Arts Council of England Writers Award, the Wingate and the Southern Arts Awards, and been nominated for the Orange Prize, the Scottish Writer of the Year Award, the Edinburgh Fringe Critics Award, the Kibble Prize and the West Australian Premier's Book Awards. She has taught Creative Writing for the University of Oxford, been a Royal Literary Fund Writing Fellow and is the Program Director of Faber Academy in Australia. Floodline is her fifth novel.

Allen and Unwin
Author: Kathryn Heyman
RRP: $29.99