No Time Like The Present

Nadine Gordimer

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01 March 2012

In No Time Like the Present, Gordimer trains her keen eye on South Africa and what has become of it since Mandela’s jubilant release from prison. At the heart of her story is an interracial couple, Steve and Jabulile, living in a newly – tentatively – free South Africa, he a university lecturer she a lawyer, both comrades in the Struggle and now parents of children born in freedom. There is nothing so extraordinary about their lives, and yet, in telling their story, and the stories of their friends and families, Gordimer manages to capture the tortured, fragmented essence of a nation struggling to define itself in the post-apartheid world of Thabo Mbeki and Jacob Zuma.

The subject is contemporary, but Gordimer’s treatment is, as ever, timeless. No Time Like the Present is a powerful state of the nation novel with a very human heart.