Graphic: Drug abuse, Drug use, Homophobia, Medical content, Mental illness, Religious bigotry, Suicidal thoughts, Suicide, Transphobia, and Sexual assault
DNF @ 50%. I was so excited to read this book, but the main plot doesn't kick in until 45% through the book and it's just bogged down by an unnecessary romance and background info that doesn't add anything (it may come back around later on).
*I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a review.*
First thing's first: if you like Grey's Anatomy, Kimmery Martin is the author for you. I haven't read her first book, The Queen of Hearts, yet (but you can bet it's on my TBR now) but her medical knowledge combined with a well-crafted, fast-moving plot in The Antidote for Everything made it feel like I was reading through a season of an ER drama. It was awesome.
In this book, Martin deals with difficult topics that are extremely relevant in today's political climate, particularly the interplay between private healthcare and access to medical services for the LGBTQ community. In the author's note, Martin mentions that this wasn't initially the story she had intended to write - but I'm so glad she did. As someone who lives in a country with free universal healthcare, I really do take it for granted, but this story made me think about how circumstances could be so different if healthcare was privatized and the beliefs/stances of clinic's owners affected who would be offered treatment and the type of treatment being offered.
There is a romance storyline as well, but I loved that Martin didn't let it overshadow the main story. Instead, it had an accompanying role to play and emphasized the importance of maintaining friendships even when (especially when) new relationships are formed.
 I read this almost a week ago but haven't found time to post it in the midst of all this intense global pandemic news (also haven't been able to focus on reading much this week - going to need some lighter reads, the dystopian fiction I was reading suddenly feels too close to home). Anyway, THIS BOOK: A great read if you're interested in medical life. Or discrimination laws. Or friendship. The author is a doctor and, from what I hear, her representation of doctors' lives rings true. Main characters are two doctor friends whose practice decides they will no longer treat transgender patients and the legal and moral and social battles that ensue. And! It's set in Charleston and feels very South Carolina. Beautiful writing, will be checking out her other book, whenever I can properly focus again. Hang in there, y'all! book "Is there a doctor on the plane?" Seven otherwise innocuous words, striking fear into the heart of every physician. Like, "Quick, can you bring me a whole bunch of paper towels" and "Omigod, where's the plunger," the implication was obvious. Some phrases just herald disaster.  star star star star #TheAntidoteForEverything #KimmeryMartin @KimmeryMartin #MedicalFiction #LiteraryFiction #LGBTQBooks #LGBTQFiction
"Is there a doctor on the plane?" Seven otherwise innocuous words, striking fear into the heart of every physician. Like, "Quick, can you bring me a whole bunch of paper towels" and "Omigod, where's the plunger," the implication was obvious. Some phrases just herald disaster. 
His officious air tightened into something else: poorly restrained dislike, maybe, or that justified look people got when provided with an opportunity to rationalize whatever malignant crap they've been secretly longing to do. [124-125]
"I appreciate the sentiment, Darby, but sometimes things don't work out. Sometimes there's no antidote for what's wrong."
"There's an antidote for everything," Darby said, optimism written all over her face. "Sometimes you just have to figure out what it is." 
(sometimes the cure is worse than the poison.)
All physicians employ some degree of dissociation when viewing their most vulnerable patients; you had to master the trick of simultaneously thinking of them as fully human but also as a kind of disembodied technical challenge to master. This trick didn't negate compassion or empathy, but it smoothed over your reaction, allowing you to process the worst of it later.  (emotional detachment)
Maybe this was a metaphor, both for the church and for humanity: as they aged, they should hope to grow stronger and more enlightened. (278)
Deep fakes - The way these programs work is interesting. They utilize artificial intelligence algorithms by training the machine to recognize an image - say, a person's face - by showing it hundreds of images of that face. Then the program is able to transfer the face to a video image of someone else. It's the same technology that allows people on Reddit to make fake porn movies of celebrities, or to portray politicians saying things they've never actually said.
"What they call deepfakes," said the reporter.
"That's correct. We live in a time where it's very difficult to discern what's real and what isn't."
I wanted to protect you and protect our patients, but in the process I sacrificed whatever virtue I possessed. I was wrong. The only thing that matters - the only antidote for discrimination and corruption and every other evil that plagues our society - is integrity. Behaving with honor. Shining a light on the truth. Not gaming the system to suit your... aims." 
This book took me by surprise in the best way. Physicians Georgia and Jonah are best friends. They’re extremely close and consider each other family, so when it becomes clear that their employer is coming after Jonah and his LGBT patients because of their sexuality, Georgia will do whatever it takes to help her friend.
I loved that a platonic friendship was at the center of the story- I don't often see it, and rarely is it as well done as this was. This had plenty of witty banter and humor, but handled the serious topics with care. More importantly, I really appreciated that the author included healthcare and employment discrimination on the basis of sexuality as a plot point, as this discrimination continues to happen today at the expense of the lives of members of the community. This book was a great blend of thought-provoking and heart-warming with a little romance thrown in, and I loved it. Highly recommend!
TW // trans- homophobia, suicide, sexual assault
Thank you to Berkley for my free copy.
Really quite good overall! It fell into a couple of writing styles that I’m not a fan of (first and foremost that thing where [something gets teased, there’s a ton of build up, chapter ends in cliffhanger, next chapter starts off with a ton of irrelevant stuff]—I just hate that so much and I don’t know why. I love suspense usually. But not in that way and not in that way over and over and over again.). But in terms of the topic and the plot I thought it was really good! Transgender healthcare is such an important thing, especially in our world today, and it’s really uplifting to have a real life doctor write a well-informed novel about the topic, making it so accessible. Especially since the author acknowledged that she does not know from first hand experience since she is a white, cisgender, straight woman. But I think she does a good job since she is a doctor who is confronted by this idea in her everyday work. I also saw that Jesse of bowtiesandbooks (who is non-binary) really loves this book. I also liked that this one was more explicitly diverse, as I remember while reading her debut that it all seemed very white.
DNFed once sexual assault introduced. High hopes, disappointed by plot/side characters. Appreciated care shown with sensitivity readers.
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