I spent a lovely bank holiday in Salcombe last weekend and took the opportunity to read the fabulous ‘My Sister, The Serial Killer‘ by Oyinkan Braithwaite, which my sister gave me for my birthday. Yes, my sister is hilarious. She thankfully has shown no signs of murderous intent, to date.
The book starts by the narrator grabbing your attention with an opening two-line chapter: ‘Ayoola summons me with these words – Korede I killed him. I had hoped I would never hear those words again.’ This powerful start sets you off on a rollercoaster journey of Korede having to literally and metaphorically clear-up after her sister, who keeps ending her relationships by killing her boyfriends.
Korede is a nurse at a hospital in Lagos, Nigeria. She is conscientious, serious, dedicated to giving her patients the best service, and has a serious crush on the doctor she works with. But she is overlooked and overshadowed by the larger-than-life presence of her sister Ayoola, who is is a young, beautiful fashion designer with a huge instagram following, a mother who dotes on her, and the inate ability to make men fall at her feet, showering her with attention and gifts. Yet their shared past means that Korede remains totally loyal to her sister, trying to keep her out of prison, whilst trying and failing to persuade her to end her killing spree. Meanwhile, the police are catching up with them and it looks as if the whole house of cards may yet come crashing down.
Braithwaite’s voice and style is so refreshingly original, making this novel unlike anything I’d read before. It is a fantastic, short and pacey read and Braithwaite is an author who is clearly going places.