Courtney's Reviews > On Black Sisters Street

On Black Sisters Street by Chika Unigwe
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's review
Jan 29, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: africa, library, europe, atw80, immagrants
Read from February 11 to 18, 2012

At first I really didn't get into this book. It was set in the gloomy red light district of Antwerp, a desolate place full of ruined women's lives. Then we meet four women all sharing the same house and madame. Their names are Sisi, Efe, Joyce and Ama. Their lives all converged in Lagos, a city in Nigeria, before they were shipped off to Belgium by a rich "export specialist" named Dele. The girls lives are all told in colorful flastbacks to Nigeria. Some of their childhoods were happy, some weren't. The only thing that connects them is their visits to Dele's office. Dele's demeanor reminded me of a corrupt politician. He was so objective and self serving without being outwardly evil.

Early on in the novel, one of the girls is murdered. This brings the remaining girls together, where they open up about their past. The murdered girl's narrative is amazing, but sadly it doesn't really come up until the end of the book. In fact, the ending is what got this book bumped up to a five star rating. The last few pages are truly wonderful, almost like a weird, vengeful version of the ending monologue in "Our Town".

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02/11/2012 page 44
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