Darklittle asked:

Hi, To those who've already read the book: Can you read it without having read Harold Fry?

Jenn While you can, I don't think that it stands alone as Harold Fry does. There is so much of the book that relies on the reader's prior knowledge, and that adds to the pathos and the emotion of the story. Bex's recommendation is a good one - Harold, bit of a break, then Queenie. I felt I had to go back and refresh because it had been 2 years between books.
Jayme Although I liked Harold Fry, I think that this book touched me so much more emotionally than Harold Fry did, BECAUSE I had read Harold Fry. It probably could stand alone, but I would NOT recommend it. I read the books back to back, two perspectives of the same story, and I think that is why the story is one that has stayed with me, long after the last page has been read and the last tissue crumpled.
Pam I read it without reading Harold Fry. A very moving book, but found it did stand alone ok. However now plan to read the Harold Fry one!
Bex Dawkins Hi Darklittle,

I'd say you can... But I wouldn't recommend it. I do think Queenie is a better book than Harold, and that they can exist separately, but you'll get so much more from the story if you read Harold first.

I'd recommend reading Harold Fry, then leaving a two book gap, and then go on with Queenie.

I hope you enjoy it :)
Rick I think you can. I just did and loved it for itself. I will probably reread it after I have read Harold Fry and the story will probably more complete than, but I loved the rythm of the book. I don't know if you should, but you most certainly can. It is a beautiful book on its own
Fictionophile I am reading Queenie's story, (having never read Harold's yet) and it is one of the most wonderful books. I do plan to read Harold's story as I think he is a charming and intriguing character. I feel that it doesn't matter in what order you read the two novels as long as you read them BOTH.
I would love to see a movie made of the two novels combined into one movie starring Emma Thompson as Queenie.
Colleen I read Harold Fry sometime back, then recently read Queenie. I ended up checking both out from the library, then going back and forth to see where Harold was on his journey as I read what was going on with Queenie. Great pairing!
Roberta Remember the book is a companion piece to Harold.
Jaksen Haven't read the first book and I'm reading it without any problem.
Aubrey I randomly picked this up from the library as an audiobook having no idea that it was book #2 and really enjoyed it. It served great as a stand alone story and I was shocked when I finished it and found out that I had skipped the first one.
Barbara I read this book first and loved it. Now I can go back & read the first book and connect the two. I was not disappointed in any way by not knowing what Harold was doing. Maybe I will change my mind after I read the first book, but I loved Queenie's story on it's own.
Judy Mann Absolutely.Definitely.It is brilliant without the Harold Fry book.In fact I read them backwards-I mean I read the Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy first and then Harold Fry after and to be frank? Harold Fry was NOT NOT NOT nearly as brilliant-as the Love Song of MQH. JM
Kathee You can, but why would you want to? Harold Fry is a lovely read and you get to meet Harold and learn about him and his pilgrimage, then, in the second book, read the startling things that Harold could not have known. There's an unfortunate "surprise" about Harold's son, David, that is a big reveal in the first book and is important to the second book, which gives a different lead-up to it. Whatever you decide, enjoy them both!
Jedi I read it without reading the first one, and I think I didn't enjoy it because it didn't have the right momentum without knowing the background.
Chery I’ve only read Queenie and gave it a 4
Kristi No, I wouldn't. Read Harold Fry first! Both are similar, both excellent!
Joanna I think you could and many have, but you would then probably want to read Harold Fry to see the other side of the story. Both are wonderful. I hope you enjoy.
Susan T. Case Although one can read this book without having read Harold Fry, I truly recommend reading Harold Fry first. Having done so myself, many things revealed in Queenie seemed so much more meaningful.

If you enjoy audio books, as I do whilst driving, the audio of Queenie read by the wonderful actress Celia Imrie is exceptional.
Louise No. It is essential to read Harold Fry first to grasp the real significance of most of the events in this book.
Lori French Yes, you can. The author explains it should be considered a companion book, not a prequel or sequel. Though I think it would be best when read along with The Unlikely Pilgrimage...
Linda Badcock I have not read Harold Fry but I am going to read it as soon as I get my hands on a copy. That being said, I found this book a wonderful story about life, relationships, hospices, friendship... Would I have found it better if I'd read Harold's story first? Maybe, but it was great on its own.
Arlecia I'm thinking it may not be a bad thing to read this one first. Because it may cast a different light on Harold's walk.
Marlene It will be more meaningful if you read Harold Fry first.
Amy I read Queenie after Harold, but with quite a gap between. I think each stands alone, but also that each enhances the other. As a pair, I think I would read Harold first. But it would be interesting to hear from someone who read them in the other order.
Lisa Cobb Sabatini Absolutely. I read this one without having read the other and I was truly moved. I am now curious to read the other and I may find myself more moved by the first having already read Queenie's story.
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