Justin Cartwright, the Cape Town-born British writer, has died aged 73.
Cartwright was a stalwart of the Franschhoek Literary Festival.
He wrote 13 novels, including In Every Face I Meet, which was shortlisted for the Booker Prize, and Leading the Cheers, which won the 1998 Whitbread Book Award for best novel. Masai Dreaming (1993) won an M-Net Literary Award.
His last novel, published in 2015, was Up Against the Night, and deals with a British family who visit Cape Town where they are victims of violent crime.
My favourite of his novels was The Promise of Happiness published in 2005 and set in Cornwall, as a family prepares for a wedding. This was his bestselling novel which saw more than 120 000 copies sold, according to The Bookseller.
It won both South Africa’s Sunday Times Fiction Prize and the 2005 Hawthornden Prize.
Long-time friend Gordon Walker, whom he met at Oxford, told The Bookseller: “The main themes of his books were about South Africa; some were set in Cornwall where we went on holiday. He was very good at drawing on characters, some of whom I knew in real life, some of whom were composite…I always felt he was fulfilled and he would write a book every two years.”
Cartwright, who had been awarded the MBE, worked in advertising after university and also directed documentaries, films and TV ads. – Vivien Horler