The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy: A Review

July 26, 2019

Have you read well-loved author, Rachel Joyce?

The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy by Rachel Joyce

The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy Review

Genre/Categories: Contemporary Fiction, Women’s Fiction, Love Story

*This post contains Amazon affiliate links.


If you’ve read The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry by Rachel Joyce, you know that Harold has set out on a walking trip across England to visit his former coworker Queenie Hennessy who is dying from cancer. He tells her to wait for him and believes that his pilgrimage will help keep her alive. In The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy we hear Queenie’s story including all her secrets and relive the spirit of Harold’s pilgrimage from her perspective. This is not a prequel or a sequel; it is a companion to Harold’s story. When the two works are put together we are able to construct a complete picture of their lives.

Amazon Rating:  4.4 Stars

My Thoughts:

Auto Buy Author: If someone askes you about an auto-buy author, who would you name? Rachel Joyce is one of my auto-buy authors, and I love her memorable stories! She is a master of the character-driven novel with just enough plot to keep me engaged. This is the third of her books I’ve read, and although I have loved them all, if I had to rank them in order of preference they would stack up like this: The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry (full review here); The Music Shop (full review here); and The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy.

Companion Stories: Harold Fry and Queenie Hennessy are companion stories, NOT prequels or sequels. The two books can be read as stand-alones but are richer when read together. The Music Shop is a true stand-alone.

The Writing: Rachel Joyce writes exquisite prose and heartfelt and poignant stories with thought-provoking themes. While Harold Fry reads like an allegory, Queenie Hennessy is a first-person love story and confession. The Music Shop is also a love story. In each work, Rachel Joyce creates a memorable, unforgettable, and loveable cast of characters. I feel like Rachel Joyce particularly loves Queenie Hennessy and her story is told tenderly and with deep empathy for Queenie and all the residents of the hospice center.

Settings: Rachel Joyce uses vivid details to create unique settings. In Harold Fry we feel like we’ve walked the entire 600 miles across England with him; however, Queenie Hennessy is told in quiet first person and we’re confined to a bed in a hospice center. In The Music Shop, we are transported to a well-loved vinyl music shop in a rundown suburb of London.

Recommended. I wholeheartedly recommend these three Rachel Joyce stories for fans of beautifully written, character-driven stories. Queen Hennessy is recommended especially for readers who have loved and appreciated Harold Fry. If you’ve never read Rachel Joyce, I encourage you to give one of her books a try!

For more praise, please see Davida’s review of The Love Song of Queenie Hennessy.

And high praise from Nicki who recommends the audio book!

My Rating:  4 Stars



The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy

The Love Story of Miss Queenie Hennessy Information

Meet the Author, Rachel Joyce

Rachel Joyce

Rachel Joyce is the author of the Sunday Times and international bestsellers The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry and Perfect. The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry was short-listed for the Commonwealth Book Prize and long-listed for the Man Booker Prize and has been translated into thirty-six languages. Joyce was awarded the Specsavers National Book Awards New Writer of the Year in 2012. She is also the author of the digital short story A Faraway Smell of Lemon and is the award-winning writer of more than thirty original afternoon plays and classic adaptations for BBC Radio 4. Rachel Joyce lives with her family in Gloucestershire.


Have you read Rachel Joyce?

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Looking Ahead:

Next week, I’ll have my July Wrap Up and my Two Year Blogiversary Post and Giveaway!

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Unless explicitly stated that they are free, all books that I review have been purchased by me or borrowed from the library.

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