Review: Stay With Me by Ayobami Adebayo

My Rating: 5 / 5 stars

Verdict: Buy Borrow Bypass

Synopsis (from Goodreads):

Yejide and Akin have been married since they met and fell in love at university. Though many expected Akin to take several wives, he and Yejide have always agreed: polygamy is not for them. But four years into their marriage–after consulting fertility doctors and healers, trying strange teas and unlikely cures–Yejide is still not pregnant. She assumes she still has time–until her family arrives on her doorstep with a young woman they introduce as Akin’s second wife. Furious, shocked, and livid with jealousy, Yejide knows the only way to save her marriage is to get pregnant, which, finally, she does, but at a cost far greater than she could have dared to imagine. An electrifying novel of enormous emotional power, Stay With Me asks how much we can sacrifice for the sake of family.

My Thoughts:

This story will give you all the feels. Yejide and Akin experience such a rollercoaster of emotions and situations, and Adebayo brings you right along for the ride. While many couples struggle with infertility, Stay With Me tells the story of a couple willing to do whatever it takes to conceive. And in Nigeria, “whatever it takes” has a whole new meaning. Both Yejide and Akin make sacrifices for one another’s happiness, and these sacrifices brought their own challenges. This story is told so beautifully that the reader cannot help but empathize with this young couple and want nothing more than their happiness. This plot has quite a few surprises along the way, which just made the novel more impactful and interwoven.

I really enjoyed learning so much about Nigeria. Adebayo is Nigerian, and she writes so beautifully about the culture and lifestyle in Nigeria in the 90s. I always love reading a book by an #OwnVoices author, which means that a writer is writing about a community and way of life of which they’re a part. I learned a lot about the political climate during this time, as well as customs and traditions that are meaningful to this community.

I loved the title of this book, Stay With Me. At the end of the day, that’s exactly what every single character wanted and, ultimately, I think that’s what everyone wants. No one wants to be alone. And in this story, ‘stay with me’ was said by husbands and wives, parents and children, brothers, and friends. ‘Stay with me’ is also the name of a character in this story, which really drives this theme home. Connection can disappear in so many ways, and sometimes, ‘stay with me’ is a plea, a command, and a wish all in one.

Wrap Up:

Clearly, I loved this book. I was astonished at how quickly I became engrossed in the story and felt all of the feelings for these characters. I love reading stories about the inner workings of a family, and this book absolutely delivers. I cannot recommend this book enough, especially if you’re looking for a story that really zeros in on one particular family.

This book is…

heartbreaking

beautifully written

powerful

a quick read

illuminating

Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group

Genre: fiction

Page Count: 260

ISBN: 0451494601

Available here from IndieBound.

Have you read Stay With Me?

I am an affiliate with IndieBound and as such, receive a tiny commission should you choose to click through any of the above links and purchase the book(s). Thank you for supporting A Word is Power!

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