Friday 10 September 2021

Next Of Kin by Kia Abdullah | Book Review

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Next Of Kin by Kia Abdullah - 5/5
On an ordinary working day...

Leila Syed receives a call that cleaves her life in two. Her brother-in-law’s voice is filled with panic. His son’s nursery have called to ask where little Max is.

...your worst nightmare...

Leila was supposed to drop Max off that morning. But she forgot.

Racing to the carpark, she grasps the horror of what she has done.... about to come true...

What follows is an explosive high-profile trial that will tear the family apart. But as the case progresses, it becomes clear there’s more to this incident than meets the eye...

Oh my goodness, Kia Abdullah can write a courtroom drama like no other. I gave Take It Back and Truth Be Told 5/5 too and I fully expected Next Of Kin to follow in their footsteps.

The story follows Leila Syed and her sister Yasmin. Their parents died when they were younger, with eighteen-year-old Leila raising eleven-year-old Yasmin. She worked hard to provide for herself and her younger sister, eventually opening her own architecture firm.

Leila is married to Will, they have separated but are on relatively good terms and Yasmin is married to Andrew. We learn that Will and Leila have not been able to conceive and Yasmin has a three-year-old son called Max. Their eldest son Toby died previously due to epidermolysis bullose, a skin condition.

One morning, Andrew calls Leila to ask if she can drop Max to nursery. She accepts but takes an important call and rushes to work, leaving Max in the car on the hottest day of the year. I went into this book without reading the synopsis so I genuinely gasped when I realised what was about to happen.

The main bulk of the novel focuses on Leila's court case. Abdullah has written the witness statements so well that I was doubtful at parts and wanted to know the truth myself. The book explores the sisters' relationship, that sibling jealousy with both of them thinking the other has a perfect life. It is so interesting reading about how words can be turned against you or how a simple, insignificant moment in the past can contradict you. 

I felt so many emotions whilst reading and I changed my opinion on almost every character. Just when I got past one twist, there was another that I totally did not expect. 

That ending too... I need more. What happens next?!

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