Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams | Book Review

“Someone asked me if Queenie is an ‘issues’ book – and I said no. It is just about a woman living her life.”

Candice Carty-Williams

Ignore what the blurbs will tell you about this book. Ignore the comp titles. Just know that the title is a perfect summary. It’s about Queenie. It’s not “Queenie and ___ Blank take on London” blah blah blah. Go in expecting to read about Queenie, a 25-year-old British Jamaican woman stuck in an entry level job and who’s broken up with her long-term white boyfriend. And with that story you get all of Queenie: her baggage, her jokes, her mistakes, and her charms.

I was utterly charmed by Queenie. Listening to the book had me laughing out loud one minute and muttering “Oh Queenie no” the next. But I think you need to go in without those blurbs and comps to color your expectations. I’ve seen reviews saying it didn’t delve into the more serious topics enough. But that’s what wrong expectations will get you.

Queenie, the book, touches on everything from interracial relationships, female friendship, fetishization of Black women, Black Lives Matter, mental health stigmas, abuse, feminism and sexuality, and more I’m probably forgetting. But it’s not *about* any of those things. But they all impact how Queenie lives her life. And that should be enough.

(Bonus points for having one of the better depictions of working in the media that I’ve read/seen)

Rating: 4 out of 5.
Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams
Read on audio, narrated by Shvorne Marks

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