Coconut is an extraordinary debut novel about growing up black in white suburbia, where the cost of fitting in can be your very identity. It is against this backdrop of potential loss that two extraordinary young women struggle to find themselves.
Rich pampered Ofilwe and her brothe Tshepo are swiftly losing their culture. Ofilwe strives to fit into a privileged but soulless world that opens its doors to them as quickly as it shuts them. Hers is the story of a generation that is given everything, only to fall apart under the wight of history and expectation.
Hip, sassy Fiks as an ambitious go-getter from the township, desperate to leave her vicious past behind and embrace the glossy sophistication she knows only from magazines. But the golden streets of Jozi prove more complicated and unforgiving that even she is prepared for, threatening to destroy her carefully constructed world at every turn.
These unforgettable characters are brought together in a haunting novel that redefines what it means to be young black and beautiful in the new South Africa.
Kopano Matlwa is one of South Africa’s most vibrant young writers and winner of the European Union Literary Award 2007. A medical graduate, Kopano is the author of the critically acclaimed novel Coconut, and
Spilt Milk which won the Wole Soyinka Prize for Literature in 2010. She has recently returned to South Africa after completing an MSc in Global Health Science and is currently reading for a DPhil in Population Health at the University of Oxford.