Masande Ntshanga (South Africa)
space IN Twenty in 20 (Times Media, South Africa, 2014)
Masande Ntshanga is the winner of the 2013 PEN International New Voices Award. He was born in East London in 1986 and grew up between Mdantsane, Zeleni, Bhisho, King William's Town, Estcourt, Pietermaritzburg and Cape Town. He graduated with a degree in Film and Media and an Honours degree in English Studies from UCT, where he became a creative writing fellow, completing his Masters in Creative Writing under the Mellon Mays Foundation. He received a Fulbright Award and an NRF Freestanding Masters scholarship. His debut novel, The Reactive, was published in 2014 by Penguin Random House.
What it's about: Set in the Eastern Cape Province of South Africa in the early nineties, Space is a window into the friendship of four school boys who discover a mysterious grey man.
Read it for: A thoughtful exploration of adolescence and the politics of education, sexuality, illness and family life.