Mei loses her Japanese mother at age six. Growing up in suburban Surrey, she yearns to fit in with her peers, suppressing both her heritage and her growing love for her best friend Fran.
Yuki leaves her parents’ farm in the Japanese countryside to pursue her dream of becoming a concert violinist. A lonely and homesick student in London, she finds herself caught up in the charms of her older teacher.
Haruka, a young bar hostess living in Tokyo, attempts to navigate the city’s underworld and all of its many vices, as she grieves a mother who hid so many secrets from her.
Shifting between these three intergenerational narratives, Mongrel reveals a tangled web of isolation, yearning, love, and ultimately, hope.
Hanako Footman is a British-Japanese actor and author living in London. She studied at LAMDA, and has since gone on to star in notable projects across film, TV and theatre, from the Emmy award-winning The Crown, to the West End world premiere of Mad House, alongside David Harbour and Bill Pullman.
Mongrel is her debut novel, inspired by the lack of representation she felt in her own industry.