I’m a big fan of Kia Abdullah, so what did I think of her latest? Check out my review of Next of Kin!
Next of Kin by Kia Abdullah
Published in the U.S. on September 20, 2022 by Harper Collins/HQ.
What Is Next of Kin About?
On an ordinary day, Leila Syed receives a call that cleaves her life in two. Her brother-in-law’s voice is filled with panic. He’s at his son’s nursery to pick up Max. But he isn’t there.
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. Max has been locked in her car for six hours on the hottest day of the year.
But she’s too late.
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.
What Else Has Kia Abdullah Written?
Abdullah’s first novel was Take it Back, a courtroom thriller that I reviewed. I didn’t realize that Zara Kaleel, the main character in Take it Back, was featured in a second book, Truth Be Told.
Check out Kia Abdullah’s website!
Next of Kin is a standalone, and it’s a wrenching, page-turning read!
Review of Next of Kin by Kia Abdullah
Next of Kin was a tough and gripping read.
It was completely heart-wrenching and twisty all at the same time.
Leila Syed is an ambitious architect who has been successful at work but unsuccessful at conceiving the child she and her husband long for. So she dotes on her nephew Max, the child of the younger sister she helped to raise.
But one morning changes everything. Her brother-in-law calls and asks if she can drop her nephew off at nursery. She agrees, but on the way gets a frantic call from work. She rushes there, completely forgetting that little Max is in the back seat.
Wow, this part of the story was tough to read.
Some of you in comments have said you just couldn’t read a book with that topic, and I understand.
In the US, most cases of children left in cars are considered tragic accidents. In Next of Kin, the detective in charge of the case decides that Leila made the decision to rush to work, leaving Max in the car, and then lost track of time.
The decision to put Leila on trial tears the family apart. Leila and her sister had been as close as two people could be, and yet there was also sisterly rivalry between them. Yasmin envied her sister’s career, Leila envied her sister’s child.
Next of Kin had several twists, one of which I was 100% expecting, but others that surprised me.
I love a book with twists that also manages to have a strong emotional and psychological grounding. I highly recommend Kia Abdullah’s books to fans of thrillers and courtroom dramas!