Nicola Pike
Nicola Pike asked:

Where does this book fit into the Abhorsen universe. After or before the last 3 books?

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Coquille Fleur This story takes place several hundred years before Sabriel. He tells exactly who this character is in the author notes at the end of Clariel. You will most connect with who she is is after reading Lirael, since this character is quite enigmatic and important in that book.
Maria Adela As others have said, though technically a prequel, it's best to read the Abhorsen trilogy ('first'/original trilogy AKA Sabriel, Lirael & Abhorsen). Reading it as a stand-alone or before knowing how things work (which the first three books detail much more. The prequel book has various elements explained more in detail in the trilogy.)
Justin Leong According to the Author, it is set approximately 600 years before the birth of Sabriel. However for reasons given in my review, for fullest enjoyment, it's best read after you've finished the previous trilogy.
Ungelic_is_us
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Carrie Gulledge It is a prequel to the previous 3 books - but don't read it before reading the other 3!
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by Garth Nix (Goodreads Author)
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