Goodreads synopsis: Zadie Anson and Emma Colley have been best friends since their early twenties, when they first began navigating serious romantic relationships amid the intensity of medical school. 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 chaotic but fulfilling, until the return of a former colleague unearths a secret one of them has been harboring for years. As chief resident, Nick Xenokostas was the center of Zadie’s life–both professionally and personally–throughout a tragic chain of events in her third year of medical school that she has long since put behind her. Nick’s unexpected reappearance during a time of new professional crisis shocks both women into a deeper look at the difficult choices they made at the beginning of their careers. As it becomes evident that Emma must have known more than she revealed about circumstances that nearly derailed both their lives, Zadie starts to question everything she thought she knew about her closest friend.
“The other thing that I loathed was the complete inability of most people to think critically. They accepted as gospel all kinds of things without ever objectively examining for themselves why they so fervently believed them.”
― Kimmery Martin, The Queen of Hearts
First of all: this cover. When will I ever NOT read something as beautiful as The Queen of Hearts? Answer: never. This is a story full of drama, friendships, twisted deceit and secrets. I really enjoyed the multiple aspects, as it brings something to the table for most readers. The book follows the best friends during two timelines, 1999 med school and present day and I really enjoyed the then and now aspect. It was interesting to see how the women’s lives changed from med students to successful physicians but I felt it could have been shortened just a bit. While I read the book really quickly, I still felt like it took me forever to read. There was a lot of foreshadowing and hints to the big secrets, but it started to get frustrating after a bit, like HEY JUST TELL ME ALREADY. The character development was strong and I really loved seeing Zadie come into her own as a physician and a mother. Emma…ehh, she isn’t really my cup of tea, but a lot of life experience at a young age shaped her into a motivated student and later, as a hard-working doctor. Being a book about two female doctors, there is a lot of medical jargon. I see this being difficult and maybe a little obnoxious for readers without a medical background. At times, I definitely think that some of the terms and procedures were unnecessary, so keep Google open for a quick reference!
One last thing…that ending?! NEVER SAW IT COMING. (insert mindblown emoji here)
Overall, I give The Queen of Hearts 3.5 stars. If you’re a fan of female friendships and medical drama, definitely grab this one! It’s now out in paperback 🙂 Many thanks to Berkley Books for my free paperback copy in exchange for my honest review.