Hello friends! I hope you’re all doing amazing. I appreciate I’m a little late to reading Queenie but I finally did! And I absorbed it all in one sitting.
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Publication Date: April 11th 2019
‘Queenie Jenkins can’t cut a break. Well, apart from one from her long term boyfriend, Tom. That’s definitely just a break though. Definitely not a break up. Stuck between a boss who doesn’t seem to see her, a family who don’t seem to listen (if it’s not Jesus or water rates, they’re not interested), and trying to fit in two worlds that don’t really understand her, it’s no wonder she’s struggling.
She was named to be queen of everything. So why is she finding it so hard to rule her own life?’ – Goodreads
I want to begin by saying that I do not understand why this book is described as being Bridget-Jones-esque. The novel is far darker and examines far deeper themes than Bridget does. Consequently it is clear why so many people find this book to be a little misleading. Despite the marketing portraying novel as a humorous book, it actually showcases many triggering themes.
The biggest positives of this novel: Queenie is an absolute goddess of a character. Her thoughts, mistakes and text messages are relatable in every way and I really enjoyed her personality. Her interactions with “The Corgis” are hilarious to read and the relationships she has with her friends are a real strength of the novel.
My eyes must spend at least fifty per cent of any given day rolled to the back of my head.
I also found Queenie’s involvement with the Black Lives Matter movement to be really moving. Queenie is a writer for a Daily Mail type magazine and is in a constant battle with her boss to cover the movement. This is written about beautifully, and Carty-Williams has a way of writing that is both hard-hitting and light-hearted.
I wished that well-meaning white liberals would think before they said things that they thought were perfectly innocent.
In spite of these positives, the novel was a little difficult to get through at times. It is very disjointed, constantly flitting from the present to the past, from email to text message. I wish it had a little more structure.
What’s more, the book is also a little bit depressing. As Queenie’s life begins to spiral out of control it’s hard not to find it distressing. Of course it’s important that emotionally hard-hitting novels exist, but it would be nice to know that the novel you’re picking up is going to be like that.
Ultimately, I think this is a good novel. On the whole, if it had have been marketed as the novel that it is, rather than what it could have been then I probably would have enjoyed it a lot more.