Tunde Leye’s Burden of Proof: A Legal Fiction with a Huge Twist!
A Review by Temini Adebowale Teluwo
So I made a new year’s resolution to read more books written by african writers, as I am an aspiring african writer myself (you know the whole, “what you sow, you will reap thing” but I digress). I didn’t have a lot of time to spare, and I needed a short book I could read as fast as possible. That’s how I stumbled on Tunde Leye’s Burden of proof on my okadabooks app. It was free and was just 76 pages, so it fit the bill to a Tee.
I really had very low expectations when I started reading this book, so imagine my surprise when the book ended and I wished it hadn’t!
The story gives a brief glimpse of the frontlines of the civil war in Nigeria, between Biafran agitators and the rest of the country, then swiftly brings us back to the present day in Festac, Lagos. We read in horrified fascination as a gruesome murder is committed. The detective in charge, determined to get justice for the victim, quickly apprehends the perpetrators, with the help of an eye witness who saw the crime committed. With such overwhelming evidence, the case seems like it would be a slam dunk case in court. Until the detective is hit with a twist in the case that no one saw coming.
Without giving too much away, I enjoyed the author’s detailed description of Festac, and if you have never been to that area of Lagos, you could easily imagine it in your mind’s eye.
The author also tries to educate us on the procedure for investigating an attempted murder/murder in Nigeria by the police, as well as the procedure for charging a suspect(s) to court. It however shys away from complex descriptions, probably because of how short the book is. Also, in its attempt to show how competent and efficient the police force could be, it may have painted a completely unfamiliar picture of the police, different from what we are used to. Their isn’t a lot of character development as well, but that could also be blamed on the short nature of the book.
I however did not anticipate the way this book ended. In fact I don’t think anyone would have, and for that I give the author a hundred stars!
So if you are looking for a quick book to read that would keep you turning the pages till the very end, I would totally recommend Tunde Leye’s Burden of Proof. It was published in 2013, but despite not being a recent work, it’s still a good read. You can get it for free on www.okadabooks.com or get their app Okadabooks from Google Play Store and download the book for free. I will be bringing you another exciting review of a book by another african writer next week, so bookmark this page and join me!
Have you read “Burden of Proof” by Tunde Leye? What are your thoughts? Please share in the comments section. Ciao!