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  • Published: 3 August 2015
  • ISBN: 9781784160302
  • Imprint: Black Swan
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 384
  • RRP: $22.99

The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy

Bestselling companion to the 2 million+ copy, worldwide phenomenon, The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry: an exquisite, funny and heartrending parallel story.

From the author of the 2 million+ copy, worldwide bestseller, The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, an exquisite, funny and heartrending parallel story.

When Queenie Hennessy discovers that Harold Fry is walking the length of England to save her, and all she has to do is wait, she is shocked. Her note had explained she was dying. How can she wait?

A new volunteer at the hospice suggests that Queenie should write again; only this time she must tell Harold everything. In confessing to secrets she has hidden for twenty years, she will find atonement for the past. As the volunteer points out, 'Even though you've done your travelling, you're starting a new journey too.'

Queenie thought her first letter would be the end of the story. She was wrong. It was the beginning.

Told in simple, emotionally-honest prose, with a mischievous bite, this is a novel about the journey we all must take to learn who we are; it is about loving and letting go. And most of all it is about finding joy in unexpected places and at times we least expect.

  • Published: 3 August 2015
  • ISBN: 9781784160302
  • Imprint: Black Swan
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 384
  • RRP: $22.99

About the author

Rachel Joyce

Rachel Joyce is the author of the Sunday Times and international bestsellers The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, Perfect, The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy, The Music Shop and a collection of interlinked short stories, A Snow Garden & Other Stories. Her books have been translated into thirty-six languages and two are in development for film.

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Book prize and longlisted for the Man Booker Prize. Rachel was awarded the Specsavers National Book Awards ‘New Writer of the Year’ in December 2012 and shortlisted for the ‘UK Author of the Year’ 2014.

Rachel has also written over twenty original afternoon plays and adaptations of the classics for BBC Radio 4, including all the Bronte novels. She moved to writing after a long career as an actor, performing leading roles for the RSC, the National Theatre and Cheek by Jowl.

She lives with her family in Gloucestershire.

Also by Rachel Joyce

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Praise for The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy

5 stars

The Telegraph

Touching ... a quiet, gentle, moving novel. Joyce's writing has a simplicity that sings and she captures hope best of all.

The Observer

If you loved The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, you'll be thrilled with this sequel.

The Sun

Invest in a box of Kleenex before you start this tear-jerker - [one of] this month's big reads.

Women & Home

A delightful read. ... Joyful moments and gentle comedy.. an uplifting and moving companion to Harold Fry

Kat Berry, Daily Express

Since finishing the two books, I often found myself wistfully wishing for another glimpse into Harold and Queenie's world.

Jamie Klingler, Stylist

A beautiful book ... both desperately sad and sweetly uplifting - even funny... I really did love it.

Lucy Reber, Stylist

Joyce's poignant tale of Harold and Queenie will stay with us for a long time to come.


If you loved The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry you'll be thrilled with this sequel.

Fabulous magazine

A hot read

Good Housekeeping

a lesson in gentle restraint

Sunday Times

Must read: a funny emotional story

marie claire

Good though The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry is, this is better ....with an even more engaging central character, it will be a hard-hearted reader who can finish it without tears.

John Harding, Daily Mail

An extraordinarily touching portrait - all dangers of sentimentality are banished by a final twist that makes you realise that what you've been reading is even sadder, and far tougher, than it seemed.

Readers Digest

The author of The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry hits a darker but no less compelling note ... However, the book is not without its own pleasurable uplift: a spiritual wind beneath its wings . perhaps it adds necessary ballast to the sparkling balloon of Harold's journey - and it will certainly find a grateful readership.

The Guardian

[With] gently comic moments and [the] pitch-perfect black humour that Joyce writes so well ... It is not necessary to read Harold's story before reading Queenie's to enjoy this bittersweet novel which is a pleasure in its own right. However, reading both will only serve to double that pleasure.

The Independent

A beautiful story which will grip you, make you laugh and cry, uplift your spirit and leave you feeling profoundly grateful and changed by the reading experience ... This is a wonderful book about loss, redemption and joy - and I give it my own prize.

Bel Mooney, The Daily Mail

This tender, funny tragic novel guides you to a point of emotion rarely found in modern fiction and the wonderful ending is truly uplifting.

Bel Mooney, Daily Mail

Joyce accomplishes the rare feat of endowing her continuing narrative with as much pathos and warmth, wisdom and poignancy as her debut. Harold was beloved by millions; Queenie will be, too.


A fantastic book about an extraordinary life.

Holzwickeder Nachrichten, Germany

Once again Rachel Joyce writes so gripping and moving that you take the charaters to your heart immediately.

Buch aktuell, Germany

With an enchanting, poetic language Rachel Joyce writes about the fundamental questions of life and death.

52buecher, Germany

Like Harold Fry, Queenie is delightful and dark. Death, duty and regret shadow nearly every page, but the darkness is not unrelenting; there is humor, and there is light.

Minneapolis Star Tribune

This lovely book is full of joy. Much more than the story of a woman's enduring love for an ordinary, flawed man, it's an ode to messy, imperfect, glorious, unsung humanity ... Her love song is for us. Thank you, Rachel Joyce.

Washington Post

[A] deeply affecting novel.Culminating in a shattering revelation, her tale is funny, sad, hopeful: She's bound for death, but full of life.

People Magazine

A moving, lyrical read about life, love and saying goodbye. this is a companion story to the similarly entrancing The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, but could be read alone.

Cathy Rentzenbrink, Prima

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Queenie Hennessey reading notes

Book club notes on The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy by Rachel Joyce.

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