Friday, February 26, 2016

#10: The Reactive by Masande Ntshanga

Three knockabout friends in Cape Town hang out, use drugs, and also sell them--primarily HIV drugs--in Masande Ntshanga's episodic novel The Reactive.

This slice-of-life novel, set in South Africa, tries to frame its story around a mysterious masked man who wants to buy a large quantity of drugs from the trio; but the novel is more rewarding when it peers into the thoughts of the characters, and their lives on the fringe of a ramshackle neighborhood.  How each of the friends became adrift, sniffing glue and dreaming, is really the core of the book.

I liked Ntshanga's writing, especially his characterization, and found this to be an interesting, change-of-pace slice of literary fiction.

This was sent to me by Two Dollar Radio and I read it quickly.

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