Mrs Dalloway, Virginia Woolf's fourth novel, offers the reader an impression of a single June day in London inn 1923. Clarissa Dalloway, the wife of a Conservative member of parliament, is preparing to give an evening party, while the shell-shocked Seprimus Warren Smith hears the birds in Regent's Park chattering in Greek. There seems to be nothing, except perhaps London, to link Clarissa and Septimus. She is middle-aged, and prosperous, with a sheltered happy life behind her; Smith is young, poor, and prosperous, with a sheltered happy life and the whole human race. Yet both share a terror of existence, and sense the pull of death.
The world of Mrs Dolloway is evoked in Woolf's famous stream of consciousness style, in a lyrical and hunting language which has made this, from its publication in 1925,one of her most popular novels.