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The Sweetest Remedy

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When a woman travels to Nigeria to attend the funeral of the father she never knew, she meets her extravagant family for the first time, a new and inspiring love interest, and discovers parts of herself she didn't know were missing, from Jane Igharo, the acclaimed author of Ties That Tether. Hannah Bailey has never known her father, the Nigerian entrepreneur who had a brief When a woman travels to Nigeria to attend the funeral of the father she never knew, she meets her extravagant family for the first time, a new and inspiring love interest, and discovers parts of herself she didn't know were missing, from Jane Igharo, the acclaimed author of Ties That Tether. Hannah Bailey has never known her father, the Nigerian entrepreneur who had a brief relationship with her white mother. Because of this, Hannah has always felt uncertain about part of her identity. When her father dies, she's invited to Nigeria for the funeral. Though she wants to hate the man who abandoned her, she's curious about who he was and where he was from. Searching for answers, Hannah boards a plane to Lagos, Nigeria. In Banana Island, one of Nigeria's most affluent areas, Hannah meets the Jolades, her late father's prestigious family--some who accept her and some who think she doesn't belong. The days leading up to the funeral are chaotic, but Hannah is soon shaped by secrets that unfold, a culture she never thought she would understand or appreciate, and a man who steals her heart and helps her to see herself in a new light.


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When a woman travels to Nigeria to attend the funeral of the father she never knew, she meets her extravagant family for the first time, a new and inspiring love interest, and discovers parts of herself she didn't know were missing, from Jane Igharo, the acclaimed author of Ties That Tether. Hannah Bailey has never known her father, the Nigerian entrepreneur who had a brief When a woman travels to Nigeria to attend the funeral of the father she never knew, she meets her extravagant family for the first time, a new and inspiring love interest, and discovers parts of herself she didn't know were missing, from Jane Igharo, the acclaimed author of Ties That Tether. Hannah Bailey has never known her father, the Nigerian entrepreneur who had a brief relationship with her white mother. Because of this, Hannah has always felt uncertain about part of her identity. When her father dies, she's invited to Nigeria for the funeral. Though she wants to hate the man who abandoned her, she's curious about who he was and where he was from. Searching for answers, Hannah boards a plane to Lagos, Nigeria. In Banana Island, one of Nigeria's most affluent areas, Hannah meets the Jolades, her late father's prestigious family--some who accept her and some who think she doesn't belong. The days leading up to the funeral are chaotic, but Hannah is soon shaped by secrets that unfold, a culture she never thought she would understand or appreciate, and a man who steals her heart and helps her to see herself in a new light.

30 review for The Sweetest Remedy

  1. 4 out of 5

    Nilufer Ozmekik

    I honestly loved Jane Igharo’s Ties That Tether a lot! But this book exceeded my expectations! It was so much better! ( by the way I don’t know with whom the publishers work for the covers of author’s books! But I have to admit those covers are mind blowing art pieces!) A woman’s reconnection with her roots and her biological father’s crowded and wealthy family in Nigeria: it’s semisweet, heartfelt, enjoyable, compelling, adventurous, self discovery journey! This book is not only about main cha I honestly loved Jane Igharo’s Ties That Tether a lot! But this book exceeded my expectations! It was so much better! ( by the way I don’t know with whom the publishers work for the covers of author’s books! But I have to admit those covers are mind blowing art pieces!) A woman’s reconnection with her roots and her biological father’s crowded and wealthy family in Nigeria: it’s semisweet, heartfelt, enjoyable, compelling, adventurous, self discovery journey! This book is not only about main character. It is also narrated by each member of Jolades family! Hannah’s sisters Tiwa, Shola, Dami, her brother Segun and Hannah’s love interest Lawrence who is surprisingly a big part of family are the other narrators. So it’s unique experience to read their side of the story. Main character/ our ferocious, hot blooded, tough, smart heroine Hannah, 29, article writer, volunteer for fundraising to give young girls better life opportunities. She’s raised by white, single, middle school children mother who gave her full attention, love and care. But now she finds out her Nigerian father she met when she was eight who is out of her life just died. And she is invited to the funeral. Her father’s lawyer already contacted with her mom. She doesn’t want to fly to Nigeria and connect with her father’s own family. But when her mother insists, she finds herself on the plane, still having second thoughts, restless, worrying bout how the family of her father will react to meet with her! Three things she didn’t consider when she is gonna confront with entire family: 1. Her entrepreneur father is member of Jolades clan and the family is truly rich and everything happens in the family is watched by paparazzis, gossip blogs. 2. Her father’s lawyer Dayo didn’t warn the family before she takes her first step to their mansion. 3. The hot guy, Lawrence she recently met at the event and had a quick but memorable conversation she’s made is standing alongside the crowd. Could he be also her step brother? Oh, hell no! She has to look at the bright side! Yes, Lawrence is not her step brother! Thank God! Lawrence’s mother was working as cook of the family, raising her son alone and after she’s died when Lawrence was ten, Hannah’s father got him under his wings. Now he’s part of family business, working at the company alongside Hannah’s big sister Tiwa. Hannah feels like she’s opened her eyes at brand new planet. She is still trying to absorb how to act around Jolade family. Thankfully she finds Dami ( one of her sister who is famous D.J.) Lawrence and their grandma Iya Agba on her side, welcoming her with open arms. Her younger and only brother Segun acts neutral ( at least he doesn’t show any hospitality unlike the other members of the family), Shola-twin of Dami acts reserved, but her big sister Tiwa , her father’s wife Sade are definitely frustrated because of her sudden involvement in their family. There’s only a week to the funeral. Hannah thinks she can handle to spend time with entire family. Maybe she can have a chance to connect with her roots, learning more about her Nigerian identity. Maybe she can learn the real reason why her father changed his mind and decided to welcome her to be a part of entire family? And her undeniable attraction at Lawrence makes things a little soother but also more complicated! Could she survive to deal with entire Jolades family or would she run back to San Francisco and reject to connect with them? This is bittersweet, sentimental, heartfelt, tear jerking journey you shouldn’t miss it! I’m rounding up my 4.5 stars to 5 family bounding, heart warming, Nigerian, sisterhood, lies, secrets, self discovery, self respect stars! I’m looking forward to read next work of the author! Special thanks to NetGalley and Berkley Publishing for sharing this amazing review copy with me in exchange my honest thoughts.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Antonella

    my five star book I LOVED THIS BOOK!! Everything about this book was amazing so many emotions, swoon romance, and realistic family drama. The audiobook was excellent too!! Love the narrator!! TW: death of a parent, grief my five star book I LOVED THIS BOOK!! Everything about this book was amazing so many emotions, swoon romance, and realistic family drama. The audiobook was excellent too!! Love the narrator!! TW: death of a parent, grief

  3. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    Because I got this through Book of the Month and it was labeled “contemporary literature,” I assumed it would be a book of more depth—a meaningful family drama. It is, instead, written like a YA romance with some Family Issues thrown in. There is no real lasting conflict and all the characters are flat. If you are looking for a light, easy to read romance, this is your book!

  4. 4 out of 5

    h o l l i s

    Despite my rather low rating, I'm grateful to the publisher for sending this my way as I don't think I would've picked it up on my own. In fact, I don't think I had even stumbled across it before, despite that absolutely eye-catching and stunning cover (seriously, so pretty). Low rating notwithstanding, I do think this story will mean a lot to people who connect with the story about discovering one's identity -- how it can be shaped by culture and family but how, ultimately, it's up to the indivi Despite my rather low rating, I'm grateful to the publisher for sending this my way as I don't think I would've picked it up on my own. In fact, I don't think I had even stumbled across it before, despite that absolutely eye-catching and stunning cover (seriously, so pretty). Low rating notwithstanding, I do think this story will mean a lot to people who connect with the story about discovering one's identity -- how it can be shaped by culture and family but how, ultimately, it's up to the individual to decide who they will be -- and (or!) those longing not only for a romance set in Nigeria but also featuring Nigerian culture. Where I think this failed, for me, was that there wasn't a whole lot of depth. We got teased with some, glimpses of it, when discussion around Hannah's search for a community, for her people, for how she fit within a culture she was never exposed to, came up. But so much of the focus of the story was on a romance I never bought into, that had little to no chemistry, as well as the drama surrounding Hannah's introduction to a group of siblings, and some extended family, that were unaware of her existence until their father had died. These interactions, too, lacked depth. They were either antagonistic or immediately friendly. While at first I thought the addition of POVs for the siblings, and the love interest, would be helpful to round out these characters, and this family, ultimately it didn't add much at all. And I'm left wondering why we even had them to begin with. All of this, however, I think could've been helped by different writing. I found Igharo's voice to be very.. formal, almost stilted or distant, and so there wasn't any emotional resonance to this situation that should've been incredibly emotional. Hannah, especially, felt like a filler character in the sense that she just felt.. bland? Other than when she stormed out of emotional reveals or betrayals, she just blankly seemed to go with the flow and have no real personality. Which, in hindsight, is also kind of true for the rest. The only thing that made them standout were they all had very distinct archetypes.. which doesn't necessarily mean they had personality. Hm. That's a bummer of a realization. Having said that, the one exception, the one piece that really worked for me, was Hannah's relationship with her mother. Somehow, despite my struggle with Hannah as a character, I felt that bond, and I appreciated the strength in writing them that way considering Hannah's search for the other half of herself was something her white mother couldn't relate to. But she supported Hannah nonetheless. I thought that was lovely. While this read wasn't a win for me, I do want to try the author again, as I'm not quite ready to write her off as a bad fit -- here's hoping, despite my struggle with her writing, I have better luck with a different premise. ** I received an unsolicited finished copy from the publisher (thank you!) and this in no way influenced my review. ** --- This review can also be found at A Take From Two Cities.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Abby NVM

    While I would recommend this book to someone looking for a lighthearted easy romance and Crazy Rich Asians in Nigeria vibes, it wasn’t quite what I was looking for. I wanted way more family drama and less romance, honestly. It seemed like every conflict got resolved way too quickly and it all stayed pretty surface level, when the concept gave a lot of room for it to dig a little deeper. The main character also seemed like she had way too much therapy or something with how fast she was able to fo While I would recommend this book to someone looking for a lighthearted easy romance and Crazy Rich Asians in Nigeria vibes, it wasn’t quite what I was looking for. I wanted way more family drama and less romance, honestly. It seemed like every conflict got resolved way too quickly and it all stayed pretty surface level, when the concept gave a lot of room for it to dig a little deeper. The main character also seemed like she had way too much therapy or something with how fast she was able to forgive family for lying to her and treating her horribly. It was unrealistic in my opinion how fast she forgave her mom and aunt. Overall i think I would be way more excited about the Netflix romcom that should be made from this book than the book itself.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Maria

    Five fabulous stars! Thank you Penguin Canada for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review. Ok, this book is NOT as spicy as Jane’s first book was, but I honestly love this sophomore novel! It does not disappoint at all. I loved everything, and it made me cry! The root of the novel is self-esteem, self-love, self-discovery, and family. Hannah achieves all this and more throughout her trip to Nigeria. I literally have nothing negative to say about this book. It definitely had a lot of com Five fabulous stars! Thank you Penguin Canada for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review. Ok, this book is NOT as spicy as Jane’s first book was, but I honestly love this sophomore novel! It does not disappoint at all. I loved everything, and it made me cry! The root of the novel is self-esteem, self-love, self-discovery, and family. Hannah achieves all this and more throughout her trip to Nigeria. I literally have nothing negative to say about this book. It definitely had a lot of comedy, a good amount of romance, and the right amount of heartache. Such a beautiful story that everyone needs to read!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Stacie

    4 1/2 "I am enough." Stars! This is a fantastic story of finding yourself and having the bonus of finding a family. I loved the multiple points of view. Very good. Happy reading! 4 1/2 "I am enough." Stars! This is a fantastic story of finding yourself and having the bonus of finding a family. I loved the multiple points of view. Very good. Happy reading!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Megan Clemons {kymamareads}

    I went into The Sweetest Remedy apparently thinking it was a romantic comedy. This book is totally not that. It is a romance-ish book but the stronger themes to me were family and forgiveness. These characters were so well developed and they had realistic faults that I could totally wrap my head around. I finished this book in a day I was that enamored with it. I cried and smiled and overall just loved it.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Nursebookie

    The Sweetest Remedy By Jane Igharo Hannah Bailey's estranged father with whom had a brief relationship with her white mother passes away. Curious as to the nature of the other side of her family, she travels to Lagos, Nigeria to see for herself and learn more about the father who left them. What she gets is an eye opening scenario about the wealthy Jolades family, and we are treated to a wonderful story from all sides of the family. This is a story with as much complex family dynamics as you can g The Sweetest Remedy By Jane Igharo Hannah Bailey's estranged father with whom had a brief relationship with her white mother passes away. Curious as to the nature of the other side of her family, she travels to Lagos, Nigeria to see for herself and learn more about the father who left them. What she gets is an eye opening scenario about the wealthy Jolades family, and we are treated to a wonderful story from all sides of the family. This is a story with as much complex family dynamics as you can get and the drama just keeps piling up, which means a book that is very hard to put down. In a bittersweet, heart wrenching and heartfelt story, Igharo delivered a winning story about love and family. The Sweetest Remedy is a gripping story that was a quick read for me and hard to put down.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Precious ✨

    I loved Ties That Tether, so I am ready for this one! I loved Ties That Tether, so I am ready for this one!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Robin Loves Reading

    Jane Igharo writes an excellent sophomore novel about how Hannah Bailey meets her Nigerian family after her father's death. Hannah grew up knowing of her father, but did not know very much about his life in Africa. One of the things she was unware of is that she has siblings. If she already hadn't felt abandoned by him all of her life, discovering her half siblings - two sisters and a brother - certainly cemented those feelings. Hannah has seven days to spend in Nigeria and in that time she will Jane Igharo writes an excellent sophomore novel about how Hannah Bailey meets her Nigerian family after her father's death. Hannah grew up knowing of her father, but did not know very much about his life in Africa. One of the things she was unware of is that she has siblings. If she already hadn't felt abandoned by him all of her life, discovering her half siblings - two sisters and a brother - certainly cemented those feelings. Hannah has seven days to spend in Nigeria and in that time she will be forced to rush getting to know the Jolades, her father's family there. The family is wealthy - literally, but also rich with regard to tradition and culture. Not sure she will be accepted, Hannah is forced to spend time with them in order to meet the requirements of the will. Her trip is made a bit easier by the presence of Lawrence. Hannah originally met Lawrence at a cocktail party in San Francisco. While at the party they both received important phone calls. Surprisingly, those phone calls took both them to Banana Island in Nigeria, albeit separately, which was Hannah's father's homeland. She soon discovers Lawrence's connection to her extended family. But, Hannah also realizes something else. His presence means quite a lot to her. Not only does he do an excellent job of helping her connect with her family, but there is an open door of warmth and affection between them. This entertaining read shares a mix of two cultures, as Hannah's mother is white. All of her life she knew she was mixed, but now she has the opportunity to explore the other side of her family, although she does experience some conflicts. One thing Hannah definitely has going for her is her very close relationship with her mother. No doubt she would rather enjoy developing a close relationship with her half-siblings. The ride might be bumpy, but Hannah is definitely up for the challenge. While Hannah is getting to know her family, she clearly sees that wealth does not always equal happiness and that she is not the only one going through changes. I loved the connection Hannah made with her family and that it wasn't all easy and simple acceptance. To sum it all up, The Sweetest Remedy was a heartwarming and engaging read rich with wonderful characters. Many thanks to Berkley and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jan Agaton

    THIS IS SO WELL DONE. It's a beautiful story that's ultimately about self-love, but also finding love romantically and within a family our main character never thought she'd have a connection with. Hannah's estranged father passes away, but she is invited to his funeral in Nigeria because all he wanted was for all his children to eventually meet and take care of each other. This family works together to welcome Hannah, and some members are more accepting than others. Nevertheless, they are all g THIS IS SO WELL DONE. It's a beautiful story that's ultimately about self-love, but also finding love romantically and within a family our main character never thought she'd have a connection with. Hannah's estranged father passes away, but she is invited to his funeral in Nigeria because all he wanted was for all his children to eventually meet and take care of each other. This family works together to welcome Hannah, and some members are more accepting than others. Nevertheless, they are all grieving the death of their father in different ways, and Hannah's time in Nigeria teaches her several things about herself and the meanings of various forms of love. The familial drama is so well-written, there's a forbidden romance, there's a budding romance, there are secrets, and there's a lot of self-discovery. I absolutely adored this story, and I will read anything Jane Igharo writes.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Louise

    Much like Ties That Tether, I was captivated almost immediately. I’d say this is a story surrounding family foremost, but the romance is really sweet, too. After finding out that her estranged father has passed, Hannah is requested to attend his funeral in Nigeria. Navigating where she belongs as a biracial sibling in the Jolades family, Hannah is continually pulled in different directions of those that accept her and those that don’t. There she meets Lawrence—I really loved exploring two differe Much like Ties That Tether, I was captivated almost immediately. I’d say this is a story surrounding family foremost, but the romance is really sweet, too. After finding out that her estranged father has passed, Hannah is requested to attend his funeral in Nigeria. Navigating where she belongs as a biracial sibling in the Jolades family, Hannah is continually pulled in different directions of those that accept her and those that don’t. There she meets Lawrence—I really loved exploring two different upbringings in Nigeria through his experiences in life. In a way, the romance acts more like a support for Hannah within the story than a conflict, which I found refreshing. And let me say, secrets are revealed and tension is high! Throughout all the pressure placed on her, I loved the way Hannah stood up for herself. This story is told through each sibling, making it such a well-rounded family drama. I will officially read anything Jane Igharo writes.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Heather❀Kiss The Pages❀

    What a wonderful book focusing on family, discovering one's identity and finding romantic love in the process. Hannah grew up with no connection to her father's Nigerian culture. Raised by her white mother in the U.S., she is seen by many as exotic because of her biracial features. Her father's death promts her visit to Nigeria where she connects with her siblings. She discovers that Nigeria is so different from what she imagined. The media always highlights the rampant poverty in the country so What a wonderful book focusing on family, discovering one's identity and finding romantic love in the process. Hannah grew up with no connection to her father's Nigerian culture. Raised by her white mother in the U.S., she is seen by many as exotic because of her biracial features. Her father's death promts her visit to Nigeria where she connects with her siblings. She discovers that Nigeria is so different from what she imagined. The media always highlights the rampant poverty in the country so she is quite surprised by the life of opulence her family lives. From the get go, Hannah feels like an outcast. There is a lot of family drama as her half siblings had no idea their father had another child out of wedlock. In the midst of this Hannah also meets Lawrence, a friend of the family who is more family than friend. They immediately have attraction and their relationship grows as Hannah tries to navigate her place in this new family and new country. I wish there was more romance but the family dynamics are fantastic in this one. The path to acceptance and self discovery was done so well with wonderful heartfelt and emotional moments. *ARC given in exchange for an honest review

  15. 5 out of 5

    Mia

    2.5 stars It started out sweet but soon became flat.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    Hannah has grown up with her white American mother and never had a relationship with her Nigerian father.  He had an a fling with her mother on a work trip but he had a wife and family and returned home. When her father passed away he wanted her at the reading of the will and so after a lot of convincing she goes. But once she's there her father's wife and one of her sisters doesn't want her there. The other siblings are shocked but handling it better. They didn't know about her but she knew abou Hannah has grown up with her white American mother and never had a relationship with her Nigerian father.  He had an a fling with her mother on a work trip but he had a wife and family and returned home. When her father passed away he wanted her at the reading of the will and so after a lot of convincing she goes. But once she's there her father's wife and one of her sisters doesn't want her there. The other siblings are shocked but handling it better. They didn't know about her but she knew about them.  I loved the growth this family went through to accept this new sister that they didn't want or expect. And Lawrence a man that her father basically adopted into the family after his mother passed.... She has met him in SF and he happened to be there in Nigeria. They had chemistry and being in a new place with someone you are attracted to it's like a vacation romance.. but it was so sweet. There was one part where one of the sisters told Hannah that none of the siblings had their Dad's smile but she walked in with her Dad's smile and it's like she got a piece of him back 😭😭😭😭 From someone who lost her father that's a big thing! ❤️❤️❤️🔥🔥🔥 Thank you berkleyromance and netgalley for the e-ARC for my honest and voluntary review.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Carla

    What a beautiful book! Hannah has just discovered her estranged father has passed. She is swiftly flown away to Nigeria to stay for a week, in this time she meets her 3 sister and 1 brother. They have been instructed to stay together all week leading up to the funeral and reading of the will. In the book we get alternating POV's between the siblings, Hannah being the main POV shown but it was so interesting to see what the other siblings were feeling as they found out that Hannah existed. Meanwhile What a beautiful book! Hannah has just discovered her estranged father has passed. She is swiftly flown away to Nigeria to stay for a week, in this time she meets her 3 sister and 1 brother. They have been instructed to stay together all week leading up to the funeral and reading of the will. In the book we get alternating POV's between the siblings, Hannah being the main POV shown but it was so interesting to see what the other siblings were feeling as they found out that Hannah existed. Meanwhile she is also falling for a family friend that is the perfect middle man to learning about the family and keeping the peace amongst the drama of the situation. While Hannah and Lawrence get to know each other and form a deep connection, she is also dealing and processing all this information about her father and the family in Nigeria. I connected with this story on such a deep level, I am not sure I can articulate how much it touched me. I have felt many of the same emotions Hannah went through, I too have a distance relationship with my father and a separate family that I got to know later in life. There were some moments that I felt so accurately and so deeply I had to set the book down and process. It was an incredibly insightful experience for me, and yes there is a romance story in all of this. But this book is yet another example that goes to show how romance can teach so much. Despite swooning, which I did a lot of, Hannah and Lawrence gave me all the swoons. I LEARNED from this, I felt VALIDATED, I felt SEEN, I hold this book so near and dear to my heart and am so happy I have read it. We get swoons, lots of healing and learning, and lots of delicious descriptions of Nigerian food. What else can readers ask for?

  18. 4 out of 5

    L'lerrét

    I wanted to love this book so bad but I truly hated it. I think the worst thing for me was the author’s lack of trust in the reader in a way. Like…anytime something happened, instead of trusting that we’d understand, the author would explain why it did. So if someone makes a look after a particular moment, it would be explained in detail by the narrator. Instead of letting me read the book, see the movie in my head, and put the pieces together myself. It’s like it was written for children but th I wanted to love this book so bad but I truly hated it. I think the worst thing for me was the author’s lack of trust in the reader in a way. Like…anytime something happened, instead of trusting that we’d understand, the author would explain why it did. So if someone makes a look after a particular moment, it would be explained in detail by the narrator. Instead of letting me read the book, see the movie in my head, and put the pieces together myself. It’s like it was written for children but then not? I don’t know. It was so frustratingly annoying. Probably the biggest flaw of the novel. The second major flaw was the character arcs. They were very weak. And random. Tension for no real apparent reason. Forgiveness out of nowhere. Dramatic introspective reflection from certain characters just for the sake of it. Yikes. I wouldn’t recommend this book tbh im sorry :/

  19. 4 out of 5

    Janae Spinato

    When I picked this book from BOTM I was expecting it to have a little more depth. There're very few conflicts that don't get solved in a matter of pages, and very few complicated character interactions. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but that's what I was expecting when I opened the book. And yet, I read the whole thing. It's actually a great book if you're just looking to turn off your brain. You're not worried about these characters, or that everything is going to turn out all right. You When I picked this book from BOTM I was expecting it to have a little more depth. There're very few conflicts that don't get solved in a matter of pages, and very few complicated character interactions. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but that's what I was expecting when I opened the book. And yet, I read the whole thing. It's actually a great book if you're just looking to turn off your brain. You're not worried about these characters, or that everything is going to turn out all right. You're not worried that something will go wrong with the romance. You're not worried about any of the family struggles at all, really. Since I'm personally going through a time with a lot of uncertainty, it was actually refreshing to read something that was overwhelmingly driven by certainty. If you're looking for an easy book to read to feel removed from the chaos of your own life, I recommend this one.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    When I read Jane Igharo’s debut, Ties That Tether, it struck me as a romance that leans heavily into contemporary fiction and drama. The Sweetest Remedy incorporates those same genres, but the emphasis is switched. Here, it is first and foremost a contemporary fiction drama, but leaning heavily into romance. For me, this book never quite achieves the right balance between the genres and would have benefited from a greater page length. There is a lot going on, and at barely 300 pages, it would ha When I read Jane Igharo’s debut, Ties That Tether, it struck me as a romance that leans heavily into contemporary fiction and drama. The Sweetest Remedy incorporates those same genres, but the emphasis is switched. Here, it is first and foremost a contemporary fiction drama, but leaning heavily into romance. For me, this book never quite achieves the right balance between the genres and would have benefited from a greater page length. There is a lot going on, and at barely 300 pages, it would have been improved by either cutting a plot point or offering more time to explore the themes; I’d vote for the latter. At its core, The Sweetest Remedy is about a biracial woman, Hannah, who never knew her father in his lifetime. It’s not until he passes away and she’s invited to his funeral that she has an opportunity to know his entire side of the family. Upon arriving in Nigeria, Hannah faces three half-sisters, a half-brother, and their mother, grandmother, and aunt – all of whom never knew Hannah even existed. Naturally, they’re shocked, but equally naturally, some are angry. Indeed, Hannah wouldn’t exist if her father hadn’t cheated on his wife. Further, he kept her a secret for 28 years, all the way until his death. Hannah is going through a lot of feelings – about her dad, about her long-lost siblings, about her new extended family, even about her Nigerian culture and about her white mom. She feels (and is made to feel) like she doesn’t belong; she’s uncovering memories and lies and half-truths. But she’s also making connections with some of her family members and having a great time with them. Between Tiwa, Shola, Dami, and Segun (Hannah’s four half-siblings), only two of them accept her readily. Their mother is also cold at first, whereas their grandmother and aunt are both warm and inviting. We get some glimpses into the different family members’ perspectives – some of them get third-person POV chapters of their own – and have a chance to understand why they react as they do. But while some are likable characters, at least one family member is particularly immature and unlikable (at least for a while). As Hannah goes through the highs and lows of interacting with her different relatives, she reveals herself to be an interesting and, ultimately, realistic characters. She’s not completely consistent in how she acts, but that’s human. Sometimes she’s strong and sticks up for herself when someone treats her badly or makes a false accusation. Other times, she instantly reacts by running away from the problem or immediately assuming the worst of someone. We get to see her insecurities and traumas and how they’ve shaped her, but also how they can be at odds with some of her other traits. That sums up the contemporary fiction / drama aspect of The Sweetest Remedy. But this is also a romance, if to a slightly lesser degree. Hannah and Lawrence (who himself is heavily involved with her Nigerian family, though not a relation of hers) quickly develop an attraction to and feelings for one another. It’s a bit insta-love for my taste, but I do think their relationship adds to the story and helps Hannah connect with her culture and her family. Lawrence is a soothing presence that prevents Hannah from completely running away before the funeral. He also shows her another side of Nigeria – both the poor area in Lagos where he grew up and a beautiful state further south in the country. Although I enjoyed their romance, it was hard for me to be fully invested in both that relationship and Hannah’s family drama. (It’s also weird timing for love, with the funeral and all.) I wouldn’t get rid of the romance, but I do think The Sweetest Remedy is too short to fully expound on both the family relations and the blossoming romance. Further, several spats Hannah has with her siblings seem to smooth over too swiftly and easily to feel realistic to me. Again, perhaps if the story were longer, those dynamics would have played out more gradually and naturally. Beyond the familial and romantic relationships, there are other elements in The Sweetest Remedy that stand out. For one, I enjoyed getting to see different sides of Nigeria. I love when Hannah and Lawrence take a trip to Akwa Ibom, a state in southern Nigeria. They aren’t there long, but the scenery sounds beautiful. Most of the book is set in Lagos, specifically in the affluent Banana Island region. In contrast, Hannah also sees a poorer area of the city, Ajegunle. I appreciated seeing these different sides of Lagos and Nigeria overall. Like anywhere else, there are major differences in how people live, even in the same city. On a related note, I also liked seeing some examination of the wealth gap and how differences in class can lead to such disparities in how people live. Of course, Banana Island and Ajegunle are worlds apart. But even Hannah is shocked at how wealthy her new family is. While Hannah would never be able to afford a $3,000 dress, her new sister buys her that – and much more – without blinking an eye. Contrast their family mansion with Hannah’s one-bedroom apartment. Her family isn’t heartless, and they do have generous charities, but I would have liked to see even more about class differences. Another theme that comes up a few times throughout the book is racism and, in particular, the struggles faced by someone who is biracial (like Hannah) or racially ambiguous. In the first chapter, an oblivious and racist man wonders what Hannah’s ethnicity is and tries to guess. This happens again later in the book, and it’s cringy both times. Hannah’s race also ends up playing a role in something much bigger. There is a lot I loved about The Sweetest Remedy, from the family dynamics and Hannah’s character growth to discussions of racism and classism, from the chance to see Nigeria in a new light to the gentle romance between Hannah and Lawrence. It is a lot for a 300-page book, though, and I do wish there was more room to develop both the familial relationships and the romantic ones. Adding 50 or more pages could have made it feel more balanced and more complete. I love how Jane Igharo incorporates drama with romance, and both of her novels so far do so in their own ways. She’s a talented and perceptive writer, and I look forward to reading all of her future books. I hope to read more stories set in Nigeria, but I’ll happily go wherever her books take me! * Please read my full review on my blog, Amanda's Book Corner! *

  21. 4 out of 5

    Danielle

    Jane Igharo has done it again! 𝘛𝘪𝘦𝘴 𝘛𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘛𝘦𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘳 was one of my favorite books last year and her latest, 𝗧𝗛𝗘 𝗦𝗪𝗘𝗘𝗧𝗘𝗦𝗧 𝗥𝗘𝗠𝗘𝗗𝗬, is just as wonderful. Hannah Bailey was raised by her white mother in San Francisco, only having met her Nigerian father once. But when he dies, she's invited to his funeral in Nigeria and her curiosity about her heritage and the family she never knew is piqued. In Lagos, she meets her four siblings and the rest of her relatives and is exposed to a culture and affluence she' Jane Igharo has done it again! 𝘛𝘪𝘦𝘴 𝘛𝘩𝘢𝘵 𝘛𝘦𝘵𝘩𝘦𝘳 was one of my favorite books last year and her latest, 𝗧𝗛𝗘 𝗦𝗪𝗘𝗘𝗧𝗘𝗦𝗧 𝗥𝗘𝗠𝗘𝗗𝗬, is just as wonderful. Hannah Bailey was raised by her white mother in San Francisco, only having met her Nigerian father once. But when he dies, she's invited to his funeral in Nigeria and her curiosity about her heritage and the family she never knew is piqued. In Lagos, she meets her four siblings and the rest of her relatives and is exposed to a culture and affluence she's never known. Soon she's falling in love with Nigeria and a man in it, leaving her to question where she belongs. This isn't a romcom - it's a the story of a woman coming to terms with who she is and part of that journey does involve romance (and a terrific one, at that) but it's also a story about racial identity, family and forgiveness. As in her previous book, Igharo creates a vivid sense of place that transports the reader to Nigeria, and I enjoyed learning about life there. The characters are all compelling and while I was rooting for Hannah, I found myself wanting her siblings to find happiness and closure as well. And trust me when I tell you this is one instance where I promise you can judge a book by its cover - the story is as warm and beautiful as the the cover art! Thanks to Berkley Publishing and NetGalley for a copy to review.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Danielle

    This was a lovely book about discovering family, culture, and yourself. I enjoyed seeing Hannah’s journey and her connection with both her siblings and Lawrence. I also liked seeing her learning about her father’s culture. The romance was a little cheesy for me. But I felt like that was a very secondary piece to this story. I also felt like there were a lot of apologies and acceptances; which is great; but also felt a little much. I understood the reasoning behind some, but also feel like other sit This was a lovely book about discovering family, culture, and yourself. I enjoyed seeing Hannah’s journey and her connection with both her siblings and Lawrence. I also liked seeing her learning about her father’s culture. The romance was a little cheesy for me. But I felt like that was a very secondary piece to this story. I also felt like there were a lot of apologies and acceptances; which is great; but also felt a little much. I understood the reasoning behind some, but also feel like other situations warranted more discussion. There were other little things that bothered me. But those things aren’t relevant to the overall story and weren’t major things worth mentioning. Overall, I enjoyed this one. It’s a quick read and I think it centers around a very interesting topic of self-love and self-understanding.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Katelyn

    Read this if you: *have a big family (or as an only child and want a big family) *are trying to find yourself & where you fit in *enjoy reading about different cultures I loved this so so much! Hannah is such a strong independent female, and you can’t help but to love her. Lawrence is adorable and perfect. All the other characters I grew to love too!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Chelsea

    It feels kind of unfair to give this book one star because it's objectively not the worst book in the world, but the one star on Goodreads is "did not like it," and I DID NOT LIKE IT to the point that I was hate-reading at the end. Here's the thing. This book has no depth, at all. If it had tried to be a romance OR a family story, I think it could have been successful, but trying to cram both of them into the short page count with large font just doesn't give either story the time to actually dev It feels kind of unfair to give this book one star because it's objectively not the worst book in the world, but the one star on Goodreads is "did not like it," and I DID NOT LIKE IT to the point that I was hate-reading at the end. Here's the thing. This book has no depth, at all. If it had tried to be a romance OR a family story, I think it could have been successful, but trying to cram both of them into the short page count with large font just doesn't give either story the time to actually develop. There is no dimension to any of the characters, the romance is insta-love without any chemistry at all, and there's no conflict which isn't resolved within a few pages. I couldn't help but think of Talia Hibbert's Act Your Age, Eve Brown, which takes place over roughly the same amount of time and did the romance SO MUCH BETTER. Overall, just a total flop for me. Some other reviews seem to indicate that Igharo's first book was a lot better, so maybe I'll check that out at some point, but I'm not really feeling the urge after this one.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Isabella (The Feminist Bookworm)

    damn. this book got me. it really, really got me. i know a lot of folks were not into ties that tether, and i completely understand why, but i beg of you, give this one a chance.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Francesca the Fierce (Under the Covers Book Blog)

    3.5 stars

  27. 5 out of 5

    Katie Mac

    I received an eARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I read Ties That Tether, Igharo's debut, last year; I had some of the same qualms with this book that I did with the first (lack of depth, situations wrapped up with a bow, too much instalove in the romance). Overall, though, the story is as sweet as the title suggests; the lack of drama proved refreshing most of the time, and it was cute to see the dynamic develop between Hannah and the rest of her family in Nigeria I received an eARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. I read Ties That Tether, Igharo's debut, last year; I had some of the same qualms with this book that I did with the first (lack of depth, situations wrapped up with a bow, too much instalove in the romance). Overall, though, the story is as sweet as the title suggests; the lack of drama proved refreshing most of the time, and it was cute to see the dynamic develop between Hannah and the rest of her family in Nigeria.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Thebookedlibrarian

    Hannah is a bi-racial twenty something American whose lived a quiet life, just she and her mom in San Francisco. Hannah's  life changes once she learns her father has died and he has requested that she attends his funeral in Nigeria, where he wants her to meet her half siblings and learn to embrace his Nigerian culture. Of course Hannah is apprehensive since she has only met her father once and the fact that  her four siblings have no idea she exists. Will Hannah learn to love that part of herse Hannah is a bi-racial twenty something American whose lived a quiet life, just she and her mom in San Francisco. Hannah's  life changes once she learns her father has died and he has requested that she attends his funeral in Nigeria, where he wants her to meet her half siblings and learn to embrace his Nigerian culture. Of course Hannah is apprehensive since she has only met her father once and the fact that  her four siblings have no idea she exists. Will Hannah learn to love that part of herself she has been to too afraid to embrace or will her spoiled siblings's resentment send her packing back to San Francisco, pick up heartwarming The Sweetest Remedy to find out for yourself. I found The Sweetest Remedy to be absolutely delightful. Although this book is told primarily from Hannah's point of view, Igharo adds nuance to Hannah's story and advances the plot by allowing the readers into the thoughts of some of the secondary characters including Lawrence, Hannah's love interest, Tiwa Hannah's conniving half sister and Segun Hannah's wayward half brother. If you are a reader who enjoys novels about relationships that are part reality based fairy tales, and/or enjoy romantic fiction set in different  countries like, Nigeria, which explores other cultures  and customs, then The Sweetest Remedy may just be the novel for you.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Amanda Del Brocco

    This was not what I expected but it was sweet. I thought that the author really brought the setting to life. 2021 Reading Challenge - ATY - A book set in a country on or below the Tropic of Cancer

  30. 4 out of 5

    Sophia

    A woman who never knew her father gets a stunning request to go to Nigeria for his funeral and to get to know his family- her family- for the first time and, in going, she might be able to fill in the missing pieces of her life. I was drawn to the central story, but it doesn't hurt that much of it is set in Lagos, Nigeria and was filled with Nigerian culture and society of all stratas in this standalone by a new to me author. The Sweetest Remedy introduces Hannah Bailey, a bi-racial woman, who wr A woman who never knew her father gets a stunning request to go to Nigeria for his funeral and to get to know his family- her family- for the first time and, in going, she might be able to fill in the missing pieces of her life. I was drawn to the central story, but it doesn't hurt that much of it is set in Lagos, Nigeria and was filled with Nigerian culture and society of all stratas in this standalone by a new to me author. The Sweetest Remedy introduces Hannah Bailey, a bi-racial woman, who writes for a woman's publication and volunteers at a youth shelter. She loves her mom dearly as mother and friend, but has always felt off-kilter with having only one contact with her Nigerian father and, at times, struggling with her racial identity especially when people make remarks or ask probing questions. It is with mixed feelings that she accepts the Nigerian lawyer's invitation to journey to Lagos to meet her half-siblings and see her father's home plus stay for his funeral. Why had her father chosen to have her there after he was gone, but never try to know her when alive or let her know her siblings? Siblings who are stunned to learn of her existence and only one sister, their grandmother, and a man, Lawrence, who was adopted in like a son welcome her. The rest all regard her with disdain or hostility. Her father was fabulously wealthy and this family grew up with wealth. Hannah has so many adjustments and feels raw with all the emotions including attraction and more with Lawrence who supports and guides her through family and cultural differences. Can she open herself up to love of family and to Lawrence? Can she forgive and reconcile with the past especially after learning further secrets? The Sweetest Remedy is a contemporary romance though not just that since there is a lot of soul-searching and family dynamics going on. It is told from multiple point of views with Hannah getting the most page time with Lawrence, her three new sisters, and her brother. In fact, Hannah and Lawrence aren't the only romance though theirs is prominent. I enjoyed seeing each step she and the others made tentatively toward being family and learning about her father through their eyes and seeing them get a new aspect of their father. There is of course some drama, but nothing like one would expect from the circumstances. Perhaps it could have dug a little deeper into some of the elements raised in the story, but it was just the right depth for my taste so I was satisfied with what I got. Hannah does tend to have one foot out the door and struggles to open up to her emotions and give love a chance because she is busy trying to wall herself off from getting hurt. Understandable since she grew up thinking she was unwanted by her dad and she had to go it alone with just her mom. But, I loved how patient and giving Lawrence was. He let her push him out a few times and forgave this. The author wove in Nigerian culture and social ways without dumping it on the plot. It was part of the developing story and the reader learns as Hannah does. All in all, I enjoyed this journey to family and love and would definitely pick up more of the author's books. Those who enjoy contemporary romance with diversity and family themes should definitely give this a go. I rec'd an eARC through NetGalley to read in exchange for an honest review.

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