TV & Movies

The Queenie Book Ends With An Optimistic Twist

The creator also weighs in on the show’s future.

'Queenie' Book Ending & Plot Summary
Lionsgate/Latoya Okuneye

Since it was published in 2019, Candice Carty-Williams’ Queenie quickly became a best-selling sensation and was named the Book of the Year at the 2020 British Book Awards. So naturally, the pressure was on when it came to bringing the titular protagonist’s life to screen.

Fortunately, Carty-Williams herself serves as the creator and showrunner of Hulu’s Queenie adaptation. So, she got to infuse the series (which premiered on June 7) with the same heart that fills the pages of her debut novel.

“There is obviously the long-running question: Are you Queenie? No, but she reminds me of a version of me, and a lot of people can see themselves in her when she was that age,” Carty-Williams tells Bustle. “She was 25, and just trying to change the world. But she always had, you know, her stuff.”

As for the future of Queenie, Carty-Williams doesn’t think the eight-episode series needs a second season. “I wrote it so that she is in this TV series as complete as she’s going to be for this point in her life,” she says, noting that the Queenie team managed to “remix” the book’s conflicts as necessary to make it work for the screen.

Want to compare as you watch? Ahead, here’s a recap of the Queenie book ending and plot summary.

Lionsgate/Latoya Okuneye

It Begins With A Breakup

Queenie is a Jamaican British woman who’s on a break with her boyfriend, Tom, when readers meet her at a gynecological appointment. She learns she’s had a miscarriage while trying to prevent pregnancy with an IUD, and the experience precipitates a period of upheaval in her personal life.

Queenie spends time with her friends, including close confidant Kyazike, as well as her grandparents and Aunt Maggie. Believing that she’ll get back together with Tom, she has a series of sexual encounters in the interim, though they aren’t fulfilling. She’s surprised to learn that one partner is actually dating her friend, while another, her co-worker, is married with a baby on the way.

Lionsgate/Latoya Okuneye

All the while, Queenie struggles with her estranged relationship with her mother and her work as a writer at the Daily Read starts to slip as she’s not granted the opportunity to write about important issues, such as the Black Lives Matter movement. While being suspended by her boss, she has a panic attack. This prompts her to move in with her grandparents and start going to therapy.

An Optimistic Ending

Fortunately, Queenie has some breakthroughs from here. She shares with her therapist about her mother’s abusive relationship with a man, Roy, and how she had to effectively raise herself as a child. In opening up about this trauma, Queenie begins to understand what her mother has been through and works toward healing their relationship.

Lionsgate/Latoya Okuneye

In the final pages of the novel, Queenie reveals that she’s been given a promotion at her job, while Ted (the married co-worker) has been fired for misconduct. She takes a break from dating and deletes Tom’s number, moving on once and for all. Most importantly, she acknowledges that she’s worthy of love — and that she has the support system and tools in place to manage her anxiety going forward.

If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic abuse, call 911 or the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or visit

If you or someone you know is seeking help for mental health concerns, visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) website, or call 1-800-950-NAMI (6264). For confidential treatment referrals, visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) website, or call the National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357). In an emergency, contact the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline by calling or texting 988, or call 911.