Book Review: Queen of Hearts by Kimmery Martin

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My rating: 5 of 5 stars 5 Stars

Publish Date: February 13, 2018

This book has the medical drama, excitement, and steamy work romance of Gray’s Anatomy, and the female bonds, motherhood struggles, secrets, heartbreak, and wit of Big Little Lies tied up in one delectable package. I LOVED it, and I couldn’t get enough of it.

I received a copy of this book through Edelweiss and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Many thanks to Edelweiss, NetGalley, Berkley Publishing, and Kimmery Martin for the opportunity.

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This book is about friendships.

The cover of this book is absolutely gorgeous, and immediately caught my eye.

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This is the story of Zadie Anson and Emma Colley, who have been best friends since they met in medical school when they were in their early twenties.

Now they’re happily married wives and mothers with successful careers — Zadie as a pediatric cardiologist and Emma as a trauma surgeon. Their lives in Charlotte, North Carolina are busy but fulfilling, until the return of a former colleague upends their stable routines.

As chief resident and primary handsome hunk, Nick Xenokostas AKA Dr. X, was the center of Zadie’s life–both in and out of work– until he breaks her heart. Zadie has moved on, but Nick’s unexpected reappearance shocks both Zadie and Emma for different reasons that are slowly uncovered as the book progresses. Emma has been keeping a secret that will rip Zadie’s heart into pieces.

I think this quote from Buddha sums up the basis for this story: Three things cannot be long hidden – the sun, the moon, and the truth.

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Why I think this book is BETTER Gray’s Anatomy

A lot of the book centers around the main characters and their trials and tribulations during their residencies and within the trauma room. I could practically hear the EKG monitors beeping in the background as I read the hospital scenes. One of the characters, Nick Xenokostas (Dr. X) reminds me of McDreamy or McSteamy. And of course the sexual chemistry and clandestine nature of a forbidden workplace romance makes it so exciting.

I loved how the work and personal lives intersected in many situations, bringing friends into the hospital world. I experienced the heartbreak of losing one of the patients, and the aftermath of grieving parents trying to put blame on doctors.

I loved how this book is written in THEN and NOW, which paints a full picture of the characters and the story. The ending really explained a lot about the events that transpired at the end of Zadie and Dr. X’s relationship and what broke them apart.

As I said before, this book has the female bonds, motherhood struggles, secrets, heartbreak, and wit of Big Little Lies. I absolutely loved it. I have been looking for this type of writing, with its humor and depth ever since I finished Big Little Lies. This is the only book that I think is comparable.

I savored this book. I didn’t rush through it. It was an easy read and the chapters are short and the titles give a sneak peek into the chapter’s theme.

The best thing about this book is the BFF relationship of Zadie and Emma. Their relationship depicts a strong interpersonal, familial-like bond between two women that contribute to their friendship equally and have been through good times and bad for many years. They are as thick as thieves. I enjoyed experiencing their close friendship.

Zadie and Emma are very relatable characters. They are working mothers and their struggles to balance work and family life are so real! They are strong, smart women and wonderful role models.

The book takes place mostly in Charlotte, North Carolina. Kimmery Martin gives vivid descriptions of the city and paints a beautiful picture of that area. I loved reading about the city, its landmarks, the traditions, the streets, and the scenery. It felt like I was there.

I loved the humor. It made me laugh out loud so many times. The author’s writing style is so warm, friendly, and funny. This sounds crazy, but the writing was so good that I felt that I really got to know Zadie and Emma and that we would be friends if I met them in person.

I read this interesting article about how Kimmery Martin has a fear of being labeled as a Gray’s Anatomy “knockoff”, and that she has never watched Gray’s Anatomy which is SO surprising! She says that she wants to avoid being compared to it. I certainly don’t think her book is a knockoff at all, and I believe that it’s even better than Gray’s Anatomy. The literary community needs more medical based fiction, and I really enjoyed this fresh, original, and entertaining book.

I really hope that Kimmery Martin writes a sequel of this book! I am not done with Zadie and Emma’s story. I want it to extend and live on.

If you like Big Little Lies and want to read a book that’s even BETTER than Gray’s Anatomy, definitely put this one on your TBR list!

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