Black Sunday (Hardcover)

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A complex story of twin sisters and their parallel lives through devastation and rage. Bibike and Ariyike are living comfortably with their parents and two younger brothers in Lagos in the mid-90s when the devastating loss of their mother's job, due to a shift in political power, throws them into turmoil. As the years pass by, the sisters each adapt with their new circumstances but in strikingly different ways. As a sister, I enjoyed the complicated relationship between Bibike and Ariyike. As a reader, I enjoyed the slow development of the story and the incredibly attention to detail that allows the reader to fully experience life in Lagos.  

— Jamie


"Simultaneously unique and universal" (NPR), this fiercely original debut novel follows the fate of four siblings over the course of two decades in Nigeria as they search for agency, love, and meaning in a society rife with hypocrisy.

"I like the idea of a god who knows what it's like to be a twin. To have no memory of ever being alone."

Twin sisters Bibike and Ariyike are enjoying a relatively comfortable life in Lagos in 1996. Then their mother loses her job due to political strife, and the family, facing poverty, becomes drawn into the New Church, an institution led by a charismatic pastor who is not shy about worshipping earthly wealth.

Soon Bibike and Ariyike's father wagers the family home on a "sure bet" that evaporates like smoke. As their parents' marriage collapses in the aftermath of this gamble, the twin sisters and their two younger siblings, Andrew and Peter, are thrust into the reluctant care of their traditional Yoruba grandmother. Inseparable while they had their parents to care for them, the twins' paths diverge once the household shatters. Each girl is left to locate, guard, and hone her own fragile source of power.

Written with astonishing intimacy and wry attention to the fickleness of fate, Tola Rotimi Abraham's Black Sunday takes us into the chaotic heart of family life, tracing a line from the euphoria of kinship to the devastation of estrangement. In the process, it joyfully tells a tale of grace and connection in the midst of daily oppression and the constant incursions of an unremitting patriarchy. This is a novel about two young women slowly finding, over twenty years, in a place rife with hypocrisy but also endless life and love, their own distinct methods of resistance and paths to independence.

Product Details
ISBN: 9781948226561
ISBN-10: 1948226561
Publisher: Catapult
Publication Date: February 4th, 2020
Pages: 288
Language: English