Loved it: Modern African e-classics

2014-08-24 15:00

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To celebrate a decade of publishing South African literature, Picador Africa is releasing more than a dozen gems as e-books.

Pity they’re only electronic books, but good for Picador for keeping alive the amazing talent so easily overlooked by history.

Among the offerings are two works by poet and writer Phaswane Mpe – his only novel, Welcome to Our Hillbrow, and his collection of short stories, Brooding Clouds.

Mpe took his own life when he was starting to reach the height of his writing powers. Welcome to Our Hillbrow is a frenetic and dark contemplation of life, death and identity in the city.

A young writer starting to make waves is Thando Mqolozana, whose Unimportance has recently been released to critical acclaim. His debut, A Man Who is Not a Man, is one of the newly available Picador e-books.

Made into an award-winning short film, Ibhokhwe (The Goat), the work explores sexual identity and Xhosa initiation.

There’s also Siphiwo Mahala’s When a Man Cries, Perfect Hlongwane’s Jozi, two works by master storyteller Gcina Mhlope, a Mongane Wally Serote and an Njabulo Ndebele.

More power to the legacy of our writers.

The titles are available at,, and

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