The Queen of Hearts


By: Kimmery Martin

Published: February 13, 2018 – Paperback February 5, 2019

Publisher: Berkley

Fiction/Women’s Fiction

I have always loved reading books with a medical setting, either fiction or non-fiction. One of my all-time-favorite TV shows is ER and I’ve seen every episode. So, when I read the synopsis for this book and saw the author was also a doctor and it was her debut novel, I knew I had to check it out.

Zadie and Emma have been best friends forever. Even though their backgrounds may have been different, Zadie never seemed to care. Emma and Zadie stayed together all through medical school, residencies, and even raising their families together while maintaining their careers in Charlotte. Zadie is a pediatric cardiologist with a husband and handful of kids while Emma is a trauma surgeon, married to Wyatt and mom to Henry. Both have crazy schedules but continue to make time for each other as often as possible between carpools and surgeries. Their friendship is one to be envious of….except the heartbreaking betrayal part.

The story is told from Emma or Zadie’s perspective and either in present day or from their past. When someone from their medical school days reappears in their life, everything that has been kept secret for all these years threatens to destroy even the closest friendship.

As the novel begins you can tell right away, that Zadie is a kind, loving soul. Someone you would want to be friends with. Emma is a bit more reserved and guarded, but you can tell she is devoted to her family and Zadie. Both of them are excellent physicians and well-respected in their community and social circles.

As the story of the past begins to unravel, the reader wonders what was so terrible that Zadie and Emma can no longer talk about and what does the new doctor in Charlotte have to do with their past? I found the secret to be quite shocking and without giving any piece of it away, I was even more enchanted with Zadie’s character. She is the type of person anyone would be lucky to know, call their friend, or have as their doctor. Her choice of forgiveness is not one I’m sure I could have done. But she reminds the readers to let go of the past and not hold grudges.

I loved that the author gave Zadie and Emma realistic “career-mom” lives without nannies. Zadie’s daughter gets in trouble for biting classmates and she is often late for carpool. Their husbands also have big careers, but they work cooperatively together to take care of their families. I think women will relate to their often chaotic yet fulfilling lives. With the author’s background as a doctor, she is able to give readers an inside view into the life of an ER trauma whether it is a gunshot wound, a car accident, a bean up a kid’s nose, or a long-drawn-out story about what brought someone to the ER (it reminded me of my mom’s doctor appointments).

Fans of medical dramas as well as friendship stories will grasp onto this one and then want to share it with their best friend after reading it. Witty conversations, an eye-catching gorgeous cover, and long-buried secrets combine in this winning debut novel. I hope there is more to come from Kimmery Martin.

“I missed her even more than if she’d died. At least the dead cannot hate you.”

Kimmery Martin is an emergency medicine doctor, born and raised in the mountains of Eastern Kentucky. A lifelong literary nerd, she reviews books, interviews authors, and works extensively with the library foundation in Charlotte, North Carolina, where she resides with her husband and three young children. THE QUEEN OF HEARTS is her first novel. You can find out more by visiting her website, HERE.

To purchase a copy of THE QUEEN OF HEARTS, click the photo below:

Thanks to the publisher for sending a copy of this book for the purpose of this review. This review is my honest opinion. If you choose to purchase the book through the above link, I may receive a small commission without you having to pay a cent more for your purchase.

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