Stay with Me

Ayọ̀bámi Adébáyọ̀

fiction historical
challenging emotional fast-paced

298 pages | first published 2017

'There are things even love can't do... If the burden is too much and stays too long, even love bends, cracks, comes close to breaking and sometimes does break. But even when it's in a thousand pieces around your feet, that doesn't mean it's no longer love...'

Yejide is hoping for a miracle, for a child. It is all her husband wants, all her mother-in-law wants, and she has tried everything - arduous pilgrimages, medical consultations, dances with prophets, appeals to God. But when her in-laws insist upon a new wife, it is too much for Yejide to bear. It will lead to jealousy, betrayal and despair.

Unravelling against the social and political turbulence of 80s Nigeria, Stay With Me sings with the voices, colours, joys and fears of its surroundings. Ayobami Adebayo weaves a devastating story of the fragility of married love, the undoing of family, the wretchedness of grief, and the all-consuming bonds of motherhood. It is a tale about our desperate attempts to save ourselves and those we love from heartbreak.

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emotional 89%
sad 68%
challenging 42%
reflective 39%
dark 28%
tense 23%
hopeful 15%
mysterious 9%
informative 8%
inspiring 4%
adventurous 2%
funny 2%


medium 55%
fast 28%
slow 16%

Plot- or character-driven?

A mix: 46% | Character: 40% | Plot: 13%

Strong character development?

Yes: 72% | It's complicated: 23% | No: 2% | N/A: 1%

Loveable characters?

It's complicated: 60% | Yes: 24% | No: 14% | N/A: 1%

Diverse cast of characters?

Yes: 64% | No: 17% | It's complicated: 10% | N/A: 7%

Flaws of characters a main focus?

Yes: 84% | It's complicated: 12% | No: 2%

Average rating