“My Sister, the Serial Killer” book review

I love a mini-hardback!

“Ayoola summons me with these words–Korede, I killed him. I had hoped I would never hear those words again.”


Those are the opening lines from this darkly-entertaining book I could not put down.

Ayoola and Korede are sisters who could not be more opposite. Ayoola is a petite, gorgeous, fun-loving manipulator obsessed with social media and killing her boyfriends. On the other hand, Korede is the tall, unattractive, passive aggressive registered nurse with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and is strangely-protective of her murderous sister. Their deceased father was a domineering, powerful and abusive man while their mother is Ambien-addicted and in deep denial about the reality of the family’s toxic tendencies. To call this family “dysfunctional” would be an understatement.

The story gets VERY interesting when Korede’s work-crush Dr. Tade meets the beautiful murderous sister and practically begs Korede to set them up. Korede naturally refuses because she has a secret crush on this man and knows what could happen. In the meantime, Korede has so much on her mind–including her role in cleaning up Ayoola’s messes– and is so distraught about her sister being a serial killer– she begins to confide in Muhtar, a long-term comatose patient on her floor. He never receives visitors anymore so Korede spends lots of time confessing her role in the clean up of Ayoola’s murderous rages, because he is a practically dead non-judgmental listener.

The situation becomes trickier when Dr. Tade finally gets a date and falls hard for Ayoola and then, Muhtar comes out of his coma. Ooops!

Besides being a quick, fun read set in Nigeria and written by a first-time novelist, there are a few other features of this book I appreciated:

  1. Super short chapters! Some of the chapters are not even a page
  2. It’s a “fun-size” hardback (5.8″ x 8.7″)
  3. Despite the sensational title, there’s no graphic/explicit murder scene
  4. Delves into interesting social class issues
  5. Made me question who is the BAD sister: the killer or the fixer?

I’ve been to two independent bookstores in SC looking for this debut novel by Oyinkan Braithwaite and it’s been sold out, so I ordered it off the fantastic website of The Bookshelf in Thomasville, Georgia. I’ve been looking for an excuse to order a book from Annie because I adore her podcast (“From the Front Porch”) This ended up being one of my smarter ideas because BOOK MAIL is the best kind of mail, especially from an indie bookstore.

I hope you have an indie bookstore where you are able to go in and ask for this book. It’s SO FUN to see people’s reaction when you say: “Excuse me, do you have “My Sister, the Serial Killer” in stock?” People stop and look.

Currently reading: “Our Prince of Scribes-Writers Remember Pat Conroy” (Seitz and Haupt), and re-reading “The Purpose Driven Life” by Rick Warren

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