The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy by Rachel Joyce.Proof provided by Netgalley.com
A couple of years ago a very gentle book called The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry was published and became a hit. I read it, enjoyed it and thought it an interesting premise. Over the summer excitement has been building for the companion book and I was interested enough to request an advance copy.
I'm glad that I did for this is an interesting book that faces dying head on but without slipping over into mawkishness or forced humour. It does remain moving and funny however.
In Harold Fry we follow Harold as he makes his epic journey on foot from Cornwall to Northumberland. This book focuses on Queenie - the woman he is trying to reach - and recounts her life as she remembers it, and how it intersects with Harold's alongside daily life in a hospice.
A book about dying should always be read with caution and this book will certainly not be for everyone. If I still worked in retail I would be cautious about recommending this to customers - it is such an emotive topic that people should come to it on their own, even fans of the first book should take care before reading. That all being said books on topics like this are important and the quality of writing and the ending make this a good, if sad, read.