First Impression Friday: “My Sister, the Serial Killer” by Oyinkan Braithwaite

This is a book that’s been on my TBR for several years, and I happened to find that it was an immediate borrow at my library this past week, so I went ahead and borrowed it to see what all the fuss has been about.

From GoodReads:

Satire meets slasher in this short, darkly funny hand grenade of a novel about a Nigerian woman whose younger sister has a very inconvenient habit of killing her boyfriends.

“Femi makes three, you know. Three and they label you a serial killer.”

Korede is bitter. How could she not be? Her sister, Ayoola, is many things: the favorite child, the beautiful one, possibly sociopathic. And now Ayoola’s third boyfriend in a row is dead. Korede’s practicality is the sisters’ saving grace. She knows the best solutions for cleaning blood, the trunk of her car is big enough for a body, and she keeps Ayoola from posting pictures of her dinner to Instagram when she should be mourning her “missing” boyfriend. Not that she gets any credit.

A kind, handsome doctor at the hospital where Korede works, is the bright spot in her life. She dreams of the day when he will realize they’re perfect for each other. But one day Ayoola shows up to the hospital uninvited and he takes notice. When he asks Korede for Ayoola’s phone number, she must reckon with what her sister has become and what she will do about it.

Sharp as nails and full of deadpan wit, Oyinkan Braithwaite has written a deliciously deadly debut that’s as fun as it is frightening. 

My Sister, the Serial Killer

To be honest, I’m not sure what I was expecting when I picked up this book. I certainly didn’t expect it to be this short – I’ve clicked through just a few pages and I’m already at 10% on my Kindle tracker. Where did the pages go?

The book is billed as a satire, which I didn’t know when I originally put it on my TBR. I mean, there are really only two ways a book titled My Sister, The Serial Killer can go: super campy/fun, or dark/tragic. Braithwaite has firmly put her book into the first category, as we spend the first few chapters (pages, really – I don’t think I’ve come across a chapter yet that’s more than four pages long, and most of them are just one to two) watching Korede clean up the newest body of her sister’s lover. Ayoola has done this three times before. I was surprised to find that they’re in Nigeria, and Korede mentions that her city hopefully doesn’t have the forensics/crime scene department required to fully test for a connection between the bodies they’ve been dumping in the nearby river.

So far, I’ve gotten to Korede’s day job as a hospital nurse, and now that I’ve read the full summary of this book, I’m anxiously awaiting watching Korede have to clean up another one of her sister’s messes. This seems like a short and fun read to start off the short month of February. (Whoops, there I go – spoiling how far out I’ve scheduled these posts!)

Would you be as helpful as Korede if your sister was a serial killer? Let me know in the comments!

And as always, keep reading.

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