PRUDENCE Makau’s debut novel, My So-Called Friend, brings us into the young lives of high school learners, Tlhalefo, Boitumelo, Lethabo and Itumeleng.
Thlalefo’s family is constantly moving, and she doesn’t often get to establish friendships. At a new school yet again, she strikes up a friendship with the beautiful Boitumelo and shares the story of her secret crush on Lethabo, whom she falls for when she sees him in her taxi.
As it turns out, Boitumelo is a “mean girl” – she steals Lethabo’s attention while pretending to stay friendly with Thlalefo, leaving Thlalefo to learn a hard lesson.
When invited to accompany Itumeleng to a matric farewell event, the same event that Lethabo will be attending without Boitumelo, Tlhalefo sees it as an opportunity to find out if she ever stood a chance with Lethabo, and if she did, would she go against her own rules and values and reclaim what is rightfully hers?
My So-Called Friend, is a tale of friendship, betrayal, and the strength to rise above it all. It is a book any book club would want to discuss which covers themes such as love, growth, friendship and finding yourself. Many will relate to it.
On why she wrote the book, Prudence Makau said, she experienced betrayal from a friend in her younger years and when she heard a friend of hers relay the same experience, the idea to pen the book down came to her.
“I knew a lot of people would resonate with it and connect with it as we’ve all probably experienced a toxic friend in our lives. I also wanted readers to connect with the characters and the setting. I just want young black girls to find themselves in this book,” said Makau.
The easy-to-read book has sixteen chapters and keeps the reader captivated from start to finish. Positioning itself in the, Young Adult (YA) fiction genre, teenage girls are sure to resonate with it and find meaning through it.
Prudence Makau was born in Limpopo, South Africa, and raised in various parts of Gauteng. She is currently completing the last steps towards a Master's degree in Management, specialising in Governance, at Wits. She works as a marketing coordinator at a publishing company and currently lives in Roodepoort with her husband. This is her first book.
My So-Called Friend is published by Tafelberg, and is available at all major bookstores.