book reviews

Book Review: Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams

Rating: 3 Stars

Genre: Adult Fiction, Mental Health

There is quite a bit to unpack when it comes to this book. So I want to start by giving a trigger warning….this books brings up a lot of issues when it comes to mental health, depression, having an unhealthy relationship sex, etc.

In the beginning of the book, you find out that Queenie has just broken up with her long time boyfriend Tom. Tom is a white male & throughout the flashbacks in the book, we find out that their relationship was never perfect. Queenie is a black woman and due to her being black she tends to deal with a lot of behavior that can be very offensive/racist towards her. Some of those experiences came from Tom’s parents. Tom never defended her and sometimes accused her of overreacting to the things that would get her upset. This breakup really takes toll on Queenie’s mental health and results in her making multiple bad decision when it comes to men and sex. Queenie also suffered a miscarriage and she never spoke about that with Tom. When she found out, it had an effect on her emotionally and instead of talking to Tom about it, she would fight with him.

As I mentioned, Queenie made some bad decisions. When her and Tom broke up, she thought they were on a break. She was sure that they would be back together in no time. So while Tom wasn’t speaking to her, returning her phone calls and not texting back, she decided to have random affairs with men. When she was doing this, she wasn’t thinking about her well being, her health, being smart…in ways it seemed like she was using sex to cope, instead of using smart coping mechanisms. To me, this was a red flag. A red flag that there was something more going on with Queenie than just dealing with a break up. Not to mention, these men she slept with had no respect for her and even though she felt the disrespect, she never once decided to speak up for herself. She just let them say and do whatever, even if it made her uncomfortable. At first, I was like “girl say something!!”, but as I kept reading, it was obvious that she was dealing with sexual harassment and she didn’t know how to respond to it. She just thought that if she responded with giving them what they wanted, everything would play out fine. I believe this was also something that effected her as well.

Many people reviewed this book and was complaining about all the “stupid” decision she made and how obsessed she was with Tom after he ignored her for months and even after finding out he moved on. But I look at this book completely different. Yes, Queenie made some bad decisions, but I feel there are lessons to take from this book. The most important one being to make sure you are healthy mentally. Therapy is so important and the best way to truly work on your issues is to get professional help. We can’t always solve our issues and problems on our own. Queenie’s family frowned at therapy, which is a bad habit in the black community. In the end when Queenie actually seemed some help and worked on herself, you could see the huge difference in her attitude.

I gave the book 3 stars because personally I hated the way the book was written. It was hard to distinguish a flashback, from present day in the beginning of the book. It took me a while to realize that I was reading flashbacks sometimes and not the actual present day of the book. Maybe that’s just me being me and no one else had that issue lol. But I hate when authors do that.

Have you read this book? What do you think? Do you disagree with my take on the book? Let me know!


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