NORFOLK, Va. — Coconut isn't your average, monster-fighting champion. And Cameren White isn't your average preteen.
The 11-year-old honor student at Rosemont Middle School in Norfolk is a painter, designer, and said she wrote her first book in just five hours.
"You know how you think a lot, and then you get the big idea and your idea comes to life? So, that's what happened with my book," White said.
"Coconut Saves the Day: The COVID Monster" is about a young girl who learns of COVID-19 while watching TV with family. Then, White said, Coconut does the most powerful thing she knows to do.
"She runs upstairs, and she starts to pray," said White. "That's what my grandma and my mom always taught me -- you pray, everything'll get better."
While the story is fictional, White said the subject hits home.
"My grandfather... I believe this was 2021, he contracted COVID, and he passed away," White explained.
And near the end of last year, White tested positive for the virus herself.
"COVID can bring depression," said White. "It can bring sadness. It just, it's not happiness."
White said she hopes her book helps people escape the harsh realities of the pandemic and take on life's challenges heroically.
"Even though we know that there can be more variants coming up into the future, you still have to believe, you know, that this will be over with soon," said White.
White has sold about 350 copies of her book since the official release in October. "Coconut Saves the Day: The COVID Monster" is available for purchase on Barnes & Noble's website.
White will be hosting her first art gallery extravaganza on Saturday, Feb. 19 at 12:30 p.m. on Facebook Live.