My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
A dark, compelling literary thriller told in a sparse, almost wry commentary. I absolutely loved My Sister, The Serial Killer, a pacey serial killer thriller set in Nigeria.
We immediately meet Korede, who’s been summoned by her sister, Ayoola, with the words ‘I killed him’. Korede arrives with bleach, gloves, soap, and other cleaning equipment to clean up Ayoola’s latest murder. Because family is supposed to help each other out. And Ayoola is her sister. But when Ayoola starts dating the doctor that Korede is in love with, Korede begins to rethink things. She isn’t prepared to see her love interest with a knife in his back.
I didn’t find the story disturbing or gory or bloody, as some others did. It instead simply alludes to the murders rather than detailing. I also didn’t find it ‘darkly comedic’, which many labelled it as, but perhaps I was missing something there.
There are some intriguing themes throughout, like sisterhood and familial responsibility, as well as our obligation to people we share blood with. I loved seeing the cultural side of Nigeria and the evocative way the author described her setting. I also loved the character arc the author created for Korede. Wondering what Korede would do, if she would expose her sister’s crimes or simply become an accomplice, kept me flipping the page.