Published in 1998, Sindiwe Magona's novel Mother to Mother was inspired by the death of Fulbright Scholar Amy Biehl who was killed in South Africa while trying to organize the nation's first truly democratic elections. Biehl was murdered very close to Magona's residence in Guguletu, Capetown, by Magona's neighbor's son. This leads her to imagine how easily it could have been her own son doing the killing instead due to the wave of violence that swept through the town that day.
Mother to Mother deals with apartheid, the violence it caused, and its enduring legacy. The book is written like a letter to a fictionalized version of Amy Biehl's mother. In this letter, Mandisa, the murderer's mother, writes about her life and the life of her child who committed this crime. She also describes and indicts the apartheid society that allowed this violence.