Yejide and Akin have been in love with each other since they first met in the university. After several years of being married though, Yejide has never gotten pregnant until one day, her in-laws brought a younger woman in their home and proposed that she be Akin’s second wife in order for them to have children. Yejide was pressured to get pregnant or else, she would have to share her husband with another woman.
Told in alternating views of Yejide and Akin, the book is a very honest story of love, marriage, grief and loyalty. The characters aren’t really very likable but they were written well.
It is also always very fascinating to learn more of cultures that are very different from my own and in this book Nigeria’s traditions and beliefs, more specifically the Yoruba people.
I liked Ayobami Adebayo’s writing. She has shown that her writing talent is very much beyond her years. For this, I’m adding her to my list of authors whose works I very much look forward to.
This is not a hopeful book I must say but something that will stay with me for a long time.
“If the burden is too much and stays too long, even love bends, cracks, comes close to breaking and sometimes does break. But when it’s in a thousand pieces around your feet, that doesn’t mean it’s no longer love.”
“So love is like a test, but in what sense? To what end? Who was carrying out the test? But I think I did believe that love had immense power to unearth all that was good in us, refine us and reveal to us the better versions of ourselves.”
“I understand how a word others use every day can become something whispered in the dark to soothe a wound that just won’t heal. I remember thinking I would never hear it spoken without unravelling a little, wondering if I would ever get to say it in the light. So I recognise the gift in this simple pronouncement, the promise of a beginning in this one word.”
Rating: 4/5 stars