I don’t know how I keep doing it but I am on a bit of a roll with the books I am picking to commit to recently. Some people on instagram don’t believe that I read all of the books I bang on about because it seems like I get through them a bit too quickly. I understand that but what YOU need to understand is that reading fast? That is my super power.
After my last review I thought it couldn’t get any better and then I cracked this open and wowu. Candice Carty-Williams you are an absolute gem.
There was a kind of book I would’ve read when I was a teenager and wished that the UK version existed. Written by the likes of Sistah Souljah and Omar Tyree; a coming of age that was so relatable I felt that at times that these kind of novels had taken direct inspiration from my life apart from the fact that they were set in The Bronx which is most definitely NOT where I am from.
When I was a kid, it was only with these kind of books (fiction written by and for black Americans) could I find stories that were even remotely related to me. At the time I didn’t realise what was missing but now I am discovering more and more books that remind me of me? I am understanding how important these stories are.
Fast forward a decade or so and I finally have what I was craving ever since I discovered reading for fun. A book that is set in a place I recognise, a book that has characters I recognise and also has stories that I recognise. And this one isn’t even written from the perspective of a teenager (which most coming of ages are) which is a good thing because I am not an adolescent any more.
We are 11 reviews in and I have NEVER bought post-its so that I could remember points to share whilst writing them, until now. And that is because there are so many great chapters and quotes that I needed to remember. To write this review but also just in my life.
I will start by saying this: the only negative thing about this book is that it ended. That’s it. That’s the review. Lol I am joking but for real this is going to be more of a “sit and hear why I love this book” more than anything else.
Queenie is written by someone and for someone who could be me or you and that is where my love for this book began. We get stuck straight into her story from page 1, which if like me you like books that get to the point, will thrill you. Queenie is in the sexual health clinic, in the examination room, on the bed with a doctor between her legs. Nice to meet you darling!
I am conscious of ruining the golden little moments that make this book so good so I won’t go too deeply into the storyline so as to ruin it for you. All you need to know is Queenie (like oh so many of us) has her fair share of issues and we get a glimpse into what life for her is like *WARNING* you probably aren’t going to always like her but thats ok.
One of my favourite themes in this book is the Whatsapp group. Have you ever added your old friend from ends into a group with a mate from work? Or uni? And the culture barrier is oh-so-evident? Yeah me too.
I know I said I wasn’t going to ruin the best bits and I know I have mentioned a few of them but trust me; for a book that doesn’t involve chasing criminals, wizard magic or time travel this book is a proper page turner. I suggest you book a long holiday just so you can give yourself the time you need to get through this. Even if you don’t look like me (I mean, why would you?) This is a story of a woman navigating her way through the murky murky times we live. We don’t get to know everything about Queenie, we don’t know if she will truly be ok after she leaves us and quite honestly I am a little worried about her, we became friends whilst I was reading.
One thing I will say is that I hope there isn’t a follow up, I want to imagine what Queenie’s life was like after I closed the book for the final time. I think that some of the best stories are left untold and there is room for us (as the readers) to decide. But I do hope that Candice releases about 25 more books. At least