This had been on my list and then I saw that a number of Cannonballers had read it before me (namely, lumenatrix and scootsa1000) and then I SUPER wanted to read it. Other reviewers give it kind of a Bridget Jones-y feel but, never having read or watched those, I picked up on some similarities with, of all things, Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine. Mostly in its mental health angles, but you might see what I mean. Or I might be totally off base.
I also loooooove orange covers.
Anyway. Queenie! Our titular character is 25, working in digital publishing, lives in London, is of Jamaican descent, and is on a three-month ‘break’ with her boyfriend. It is immediately apparent that the string with which she ties her life together is rapidly fraying and everything falling apart is a when, not an if. But, reader, we want good things for her. We see her make terrible decisions but she is so tragically human and hurting that we root for her and throw the book when she makes the wrong choice again.
This break from her boyfriend is killing her (even though he is pretty awful) and she’s trying to patch herself up with whatever attention she can find and when that’s the lure you’re using … the fish that gather are gross. Like, in a whole myriad of ways. One of my dad’s eternal wisdoms is to not start a downward spiral, because they are very hard to stop and y’all, Queenie is spiraling hard. It hurts to watch. She drowns herself in bad men and can’t surface long enough to keep focus at her job – plus her job is less than inspiring (she keeps trying to push to write stories on police brutality and the black experience and is shut down as too “radical” UGH).
When rock bottom comes – and you know it will – it hurts. But it’s also amazing to see Queenie right herself. She pushes herself to heal (it is a process and it is a struggle, against herself, her family, her world) and it’s frigging inspiring. Therapy, y’all.
It’s a wonderful book. Read it.
Bingo Square: Cannonballer Says