Ayoola summons me with these words – Korede, I killed him.
I had hoped I would never hear those words again.’
That is the pace and tone of the whole book and I LOVED it. This was one of my favourite books so far in 2019 (and would be up there in the top 50).
This is fundamentally the story of a relationship between two sisters, albeit a very complex and dysfunctional one.
On one hand you have Ayoola, the very pretty and popular sister. All men fall at her feet and fall madly in love with her. She is the mother’s favourite. She is everyone’s favourite. And with all these attributes and skills, she is a serial killer and most definitely a sociopath or psychopath.
Her sister, Korede is the ‘plain’ one – not as pretty and nowhere near as popular. She is definitely no one’s favourite, including her mother’s. She is, however the dutiful daughter – she cooks, she cleans, she works hard and she does not kill anyone.
She does however put her skills of cleaning (or maybe it’s what appears to be OCD) to good use and cleans up her sister’s messes – her dead boyfriends.
Against the backdrop of these facts, the girl’s relationship plays out. Korede cleans up, Ayoola moves on…to her next boyfriend and possible victim.
Korede is struggling with her guilt over aiding and abetting her sister. She worries about getting caught and what that would mean to her. This is particularly so when she unwittingly confides her sister’s secrets in a third party. She then worries about her sister doing it all again because she will know that she will be called to help and she knows she won’t say no.
Ayoola, true to serial killer form does not have any of those concerns. The death of her boyfriend’s, at her hand, does not seem to trouble her. The investigations into their disappearance by their family and police seems to be a source of annoyance rather than fear. Dating again, and the possibility she may kill them, not a concern at all.
And despite all of this their bond is strong. They rely on each other, they look out for each other. The issues with their mother, though different is common enemy.
They may be fundamentally different people, but ultimate they are sisters and that trumps everything.
I have a sister, and if she called me to say she needed to dispose of a body I’m not sure I would simply say no and call the police. My instincts as the big sister would kick in, my need to protect and ask questions later would prevail.
To be clear, my sister has never asked me to dispose of a body.
That however is the fundamental question, how far would you go for your family? Does it matter which family member you are talking about?
This is a very entertaining, easy and satisfying read. I thoroughly recommend it!
Author: Oyinkan Braithwaite
Genre: Crime; Fiction
Publisher: Atlantic Books, 2018
My rating (out of 5):