The Lost Colours of the Chameleon by Mandla Langa

The Lost Colours of the Chameleon

Mandla Langa

A brilliant, deeply human book about the nature of political transformations. And a rollicking story that keeps you engaged as the author re-imagines Africa through the eyes of a deposed President, whose father inspired the transformation of his country, and whose various friends, relatives and colleagues bring the imagined country, Bangula, to its present state. If you are cynical, you will hate this book for being so full of hope and truth.


MaZembe stood in the middle of the lounge, looking around as she were the only survivor of a shipwreck. Her attentiveness directed him to examine his home. He noticed the bleak wallpaper, which was peeling off in parts and the curtains that suddenly seemed drabber than usual, which folded to expose the lace lining flecked with the remains of gnats and flies. The vinyl covering was scuffed and cracked in the section nearest the door and tables and chairs were bruised by constantly bumping into the unyielding walls, perhaps in the process of moving. A flowerless vase rested on the crocheted table covering, the only ornament that spoke of the creative generosity of a human hand. Abioseh was suddenly very thirsty. 'Something to drink, Ma?'

  • Chinua Achebe by Things Fall Apart
  • A Bend in the River by V S Naipaul
  • Jonathan Swift by Gulliver's Travels

Books with similar mood

The Hungry Ghosts

Anne Berry

The Wilding

Maria McCann

The Ship

Antonia Honeywell

The Windup Girl

Paolo Bacigalupi

Shanghai Baby

Wei Hui

The Woman at 1,000 Degrees

Hallgrímur Helgason

Foreign Gods, Inc

Okey Ndibe

Priestess of Avalon

Marion Zimmer Bradley

The Family Orchard

Nomi Eve

My Friend Jesus Christ

Lars Husum


Eduardo Sguiglia

The Warehouse

Rob Hart

Dancing With Statues

Caroline Doherty de Novoa

The Holy Woman

Qaisra Shahraz

Book of Clouds

Chloe Aridjis

The Clocks in This House All Tell Different Times

Xan Brooks

Petite Mort

Beatrice Hitchman

The Song of Silver Frond

Catherine Lim

Love in Idleness

Charlotte Mendelson

The Defections

Hannah Michell

The Fractured Life of Jimmy Dice

Ronan Ryan

The Gospel According to Cane

Courttia Newland

The White Shadow

Andrea Eames

The Good Doctor

Damon Galgut

The Heavens

Sandra Newman

The Museum of Extraordinary Things

Alice Hoffman

Diamond Star Halo

Tiffany Murray

A Clash of Kings

George R R Martin


Sebastian Beaumont

She Would Be King

Wayétu Moore

The Earlie King & the Kid in Yellow

Danny Denton

This is How You Lose Her

Junot Diaz

The Meat Tree

Gwyneth Lewis

Where the Serpent Lives

Ruth Padel

The Gargoyle

Andrew Davidson

The Love Artist

Jane Alison

Henderson's Spear

Ronald Wright


Daniel Kehlmann

An Almond for a Parrot

Wray Delaney

The Tryst

Monique Roffey

Signal to Noise

Silvia Moreno-Garcia

The Last Warner Woman

Kei Miller

Tender Morsels

Margo Lanagan

Skin Deep

Jacqueline Jacques

China Mountain Zhang

Maureen F McHugh

Beasts of No Nation

Iweala Uzodinma


Nic Kelman

The New Wilderness

Diane Cook

The Mermaid

Christina Henry