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Publisher's Summary

Perfect for fans of Kate Morton and Kathryn Hughes, this gripping novel of long-buried secrets will stay with you for ever.

A heartbreaking letter. A girl locked away. A mystery to be solved.

1956. When Ivy Jenkins falls pregnant she is sent in disgrace to St Margaret's, a dark, brooding house for unmarried mothers. Her baby is adopted against her will. Ivy will never leave.

Present day. Samantha Harper is a journalist desperate for a break. When she stumbles on a letter from the past, the contents shock and move her. The letter is from a young mother, begging to be rescued from St Margaret's. Before it is too late. 

Sam is pulled into the tragic story and discovers a spate of unexplained deaths surrounding the woman and her child. With St Margaret's set for demolition, Sam has only hours to piece together a 60-year-old mystery before the truth, which lies disturbingly close to home, is lost for ever....

Read her letter. Remember her story.... 

©2018 Emily Gunnis (P)2018 Headline Publishing Group Ltd

What the critics say

"A great book, truly hard to put down. Fast paced, brilliantly plotted and desperately sad at times - all hallmarks of a best seller." (Lesley Pearse)

"I was gripped by The Girl in the Letter. The story is compelling, twisty, heart-wrenching and thought-provoking. A novel that stays with you." (Sophie Kinsella) 

What listeners say about The Girl in the Letter

Average Customer Ratings
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Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A great story with an excellent narrator

This is the first audio book I have read. What a wonderful first pick (#audible1). The story keeps you wanting to learn more as the story unfolds. The characters and plot are well developed with lots of twists and turns. The story unfolds in the past and the present and this works really well to set the background to the events that come to light in the present. The narrator is wonderful and she was also instrumental in contributing to my enjoyment in listening to this book. I can highly reccomend The Girl in the Letter to other Audible members.

3 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • HB
  • 2019-05-12

Narrator

The Narrator had a wonderful voice however she continously swallowed throughout the readings which was distracting.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Heartbreaking

A heart breaking novel about our past and the brutal consequences to the "sins of the flesh."

In 1956, Ivy, was sent to St. Margaret's to have her baby as all young and unwed mothers went. For Ivy, it was an unpleasant time for her and the others, as they were made to work from day till night, in the hot laundry up to the time of delivery and then after. All the time, at St. Margaret's she wrote her love, letters of the condition, unhappiness and loneliness she felt there. Letter after letter she begged for her love to come and rescue her and their baby from inhumane circumstances. However, day after day her hope was dashed with no response from her true love.

Present day (2017)- Sam Pope is a journalist and finds Ivy's letters. Upon reading them, she is distraught and wants to find out what really happened at St. Margaret's, however, she has a limited time as the home for Mothers and Babies is about to be demolished. Will Sam find the answers she seeks in time? And at what cost?

The Girl in the Letter, is a beautifully written novel of the past we often forget. The birth of a child should be the happiest time of a woman's life, just not to unwed mothers in 1956.

P.S The narrator didn't change voices for different characters, which made it difficult at times to know who was speaking.

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Love this book, wish it was a movie too

The descriptions are great, I’m not sure the author quite fits the quality of they story but it’s worth persevering the story becomes so engaging

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Narrator

The narrator sounded like she was sucking on a candy. Throughout the entire book, she could be heard swallowing, sucking and clinking the candy against her teeth. Needless to say it was very annoying. I endured to the end simply because I wanted to know the ending. Buy the book not the audiobook.

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Loved it. Lots of twists and turns that kept me guessing. Listened to this during commutes and found myself sitting in the car just to finish the next chapter.

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A little confusing

I found it a little hard to follow the timeline. I get that the author was trying to create suspense and curiosity but it created some confusion

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The Girl In The Letter

This has been hanging around in my wish list for awhile now until I finally purchased it. It’s a story that pulls you in and you can’t stop thinking about it. A real treasure read

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confusing but enjoyable

going and forward in time in and audiobook can seem confusing and disjointed but overall good performance and compelling story.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

A difficult read.

the narrator did a great job of reading but... the story is so hard to follow and it's very confusing to decipher the characters. the story is harsh in places which is what keeps you on the edge of your seat, but you dont really get to know who is who until the end of the book.

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • AJ
  • 2019-12-10

Not my cup of tea

The story didn't catch me. I usually don't mind twist and turns but there were too many in this book making it a bit difficult to concentrate on the story while doing other things. The performance of Emily Gunnis wasn't the best, a smacking sound making me believe she was chewing a pastille or something throughout the book, it was a bit irritating and somewhat lack of respect towards the listener.

4 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • mendolynne
  • 2019-09-18

desperately sad far too long

A critic wrote, about this novel, that the plot was well paced and it was “desperately sad at times - all hallmarks of a best seller”. Why would those traits be the hallmarks of a bestseller??

I am over half way through the book. There is a small plot that is far too slowly being unfolded for some of the time, but most of the time this story is so unrelentingly desperately sad it is a grueling task to keep listening.

There might well be a joyful ending to this Dickens-like tale but I sincerely do not understand why a writer would put their readers through such cruelty and brutality foisted upon young girls. What on earth does this teach us? One short description of how these poor girls, who were mostly impregnated in the 40s and 50s, were treated would suffice to let us know how hard it was back then. But why torture us for so many chapters with every tiny detail told over and over again?

That some of the girls were strong enough to survive is a good reminder of how resilient the human spirit can be. But alas I just don’t know if I can finish this book Perhaps I’ll take a break from it and then try it again later.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2019-02-14

Great twists and turns!

The only reason I marked the performance less than a five, was the echo talk to represent phone conversation. It was harder to hear those parts.

4 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Melissa Nicklaus
  • 2019-09-14

Not what I thought

couldn't finish this book as I could not keep up with what was going on! Kept going back and forth between characters, it was boring, and bad performance.

3 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • KC
  • 2019-08-31

Sad to think this really happened

This story is based on a Catholic home for unwed mothers. To keep the Mother's under comtrol they use abuse and intimidation. This book is difficult to read as this home is Catholic and homes like these existed.There are so many twists and turns, you have a web of reality, of events that occured there, you have deaths, illigetimate burths and it sometimes gets hard to follow as people were tortured. It is a historical work of fiction. The storyline is interesting and sadly these home really existed. In fact sweatshops for pregnant teens existed in Ireland and UK.The narration by Jane McDowell is good. I cried while reading this book. I recommend this book.

2 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2019-05-31

Good Story

It was interesting from the start. several twist and turns.kept me guessing. I would reccomend

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • CCL
  • 2019-01-13

The Girl in the Letter

Excellent. Listened in audio and could not put it down.

Looking forward to more books by the author.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • TammyR
  • 2019-01-11

Engrossing and Heartbreaking Story

Captivating, intricately woven story performed beautifully by Jane McDowell. I didn't want to quit listening.

2 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Maryanne T.
  • 2021-06-11

Successfully Spooky!

Not only was this story satisfying in a mystery/suspense way, but it had moments of SERIOUS SPOOKY factor~! I will NOT give away anything but there are a few scenes where I literally found myself completely on edge - checking around behind me and hesitant to put my headphones back on! I really enjoyed this book! It's not "Stephen King Scary" but it is really well written mystery that will keep you on the edge of your seat but unable to stop turning pages!

1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Tess
  • 2021-05-14

great quick read!

great book. was captivating and drew you in. could hardly put it down to go to the bathroom or grab a snack.

1 person found this helpful