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Monday 15 March 2021

‘Lightseekers’ by Femi Kayode

Published by Raven Books,
4 February 2021.
ISBN: 978-1-526-63290-6 (HB)

Present day Nigeria, and local investigative psychologist Dr Philip Taiwo has been asked by the father of one of the “Okriki Three”, who were killed by a mob, to find out what caused his son’s death. Taiwo and Chika, who’s been sent to look after him, soon find that the town would rather not have the story revisited...

This fast-twisting story opened with a section in italics, narrated by an un-named I, who was involved in the burning of the three men in Okriki. It then returns to Taiwo, again in the first person, and we learn more about him: his time in America, his lawyer wife, Folake, whom he suspects of having an affair, his family, and his area of expertise: the dynamics of mob violence. He’s an intelligent, likeable character, but scarily out of his depth in the conspiracies of Okriki. Luckily he’s backed by street-wise Chika, the chauffeur sent to meet and help him. The growing relationship between the men adds warmth to the novel. There’s a cast of interesting characters: the bereaved father, the new police chief, the students who saw the killing, the dead boy’s girlfriend, the mysterious woman Taiwo met on the plane, who turns out to be more involved than he expected. The plot twists and turns, and I found the Nigerian setting and history vivid and interesting. It all builds up to a tremendous climaz and a satisfying solution.

A fast-moving novel starring an investigative psychologist, with a good plot and a vividly-described, unusual setting.

Reviewer: Marsali Taylor

Femi Kayode trained as a clinical psychologist in Nigeria, before starting a career in advertising. He has created and written several prime-time TV shows. He recently graduated with a distinction from the UEA Creative Writing programme and is currently a PhD candidate at Bath Spa University. He lives in Windhoek, Namibia with his wife and two sons.


Marsali Taylor grew up near Edinburgh, and came to Shetland as a newly-qualified teacher. She is currently a part-time teacher on Shetland's scenic west side, living with her husband and two Shetland ponies. Marsali is a qualified STGA tourist-guide who is fascinated by history, and has published plays in Shetland's distinctive dialect, as well as a history of women's suffrage in Shetland. She's also a keen sailor who enjoys exploring in her own 8m yacht, and an active member of her local drama group.  Marsali also does a regular monthly column for the Mystery People e-zine.

 Click on the title to read a review of her recent book
Death From a Sheland Cliff

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