Maeve Binchy

Maeve Binchy was born in County Dublin and educated at the Holy Child convent in Killiney and at University College, Dublin. After a spell as a teacher she joined the Irish Times. Her first novel, Light a Penny Candle, was published in 1982 and she went on to write over 20 books, all of them bestsellers. Several have been adapted for cinema and television, including Tara Road.

Maeve Binchy received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the British Book Awards in 1999 and the Irish Pen/A. T. Cross Award in 2007. In 2010 she was presented with the Bob Hughes Lifetime Achievement Award at the Bord Gais Irish Book Awards by the President of Ireland. She was married to the writer and broadcaster Gordon Snell for 35 years, and died in 2012.


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Maeve Binchy Books

  • ATOAS

    Full House (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    A fantastic Maeve Binchy - written specially for the World Book Day Quick Reads promotion. Dee loves her children very much, but now they are all grown up, shouldn't they leave home? Rosie moved out when she got married, but it didn't work out, so now she is back with her parents. Helen is a teacher, and doesn't earn enough for a place of her own. Anthony writes songs, and is just waiting for the day when someone will pay him for them. Until then, all three are happy at home. It doesn't cost them anything, and surely their parents like having a full house? When a crisis occurs, Dee decides things have to change for the whole family...whether they like it or not.
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  • AIAQJ

    A Week in Winter (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    The Sheedy sisters had lived in Stone House for as long as anyone could remember. Set high on the cliffs on the west coast of Ireland, overlooking the windswept Atlantic ocean, it was falling into disrepair - until one woman, with a past she needed to forget, breathed new life into the place. Now a hotel, with a big, warm kitchen and log fires, it provides a welcome few can resist. Winnie is generally able to make the best of things, until she finds herself on the holiday from hell. John arrived on an impulse after he missed a flight at Shannon. And then there's Henry and Nicola, burdened with a terrible secret, who are hoping the break at Stone House will help them find a way to face the future...
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  • ATOAP

    Star Sullivan (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    Maeve Binchy's highly successful Quick Read. Molly Sullivan said that the new baby was a little star. She was no trouble at all and she was always smiling - so she became known as Star and no one remembered that her name was Oona. Star Sullivan just wanted everyone to be happy - her father to stop gambling, her mother not to work so hard, her brother to stay out of trouble, her sister to stop worrying about every little thing she ate. Then the Hale family moved in next door, and from the moment Star saw 23-year-old Laddy Hale, everything began to change - until Star was no longer the sweet, thoughtful girl everyone loved and no one worried about...
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  • BUGDH

    Light A Penny Candle (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    Light A Penny Candle is the timeless million copy bestselling novel by Maeve Binchy.

    Evacuated from Blitz-battered London, the shy Elizabeth White is sent to stay with the O'Connor family in Kilgarret, Ireland, where she strikes up an unlikely friendship with the lively Aisling O'Connor. Neither of them knew it would become the most important friendship of their lives. Their bond is unshakeable, enduring over turbulent years of change and chaos, joy and sorrow, soaring dreams and searing betrayals.

    With warmth, wit and great compassion, Maeve Binchy tells a magnificent story of two women, bound together in a friendship that nothing could tear apart - not even the man who threatened to come between them forever.
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  • BSZKZ

    This Year It Will Be Different (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    'There's nobody like Binchy for warming the cockles, and this collection of Christmas stories warms them to white heat' Kate Saunders, The Times Christmas: a time of year when emotions run high and long-held secrets can unexpectedly surface... This Year It Will Be Different powerfully evokes the lives of wives, husbands, children, friends and lovers. As the festivities take hold, there are step-families grappling with exes; long-married couples faced with in-law problems; a wandering husband choosing between the other woman and his wife; a child caught up in a grown-up tug-of-war. 'We are all in her pages, all of us: mothers, daughters, fathers, sons, husbands, wives, children, friends, lovers . . . It is this combination of Maeve's understanding of what it is to be human, and how to cope with life, that makes her so popular' Veronica Henry, bestselling author of Christmas at the Beach Hut
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  • BRPED

    Nights of Rain and Stars (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    Maeve Binchy at her very best - the superb novel of one summer, and four people whose lives are irrevocably changed. Four strangers, with nothing in common but a need to escape, meet in a Greek taverna high above the small village of Aghia Anna. From Ireland, America, Germany and England they have each left behind their homes and their old lives, when a shocking tragedy throws them unexpectedly together. Nights of Rain and Stars is the story of one summer and four people, each with a life in turmoil - and Vonni, the Irish exile who would very much like to help them, but has demons of her own to battle . . .
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  • ATOAV

    A Few of the Girls (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    'The Irish do love telling stories, and we are suspicious of people who don't have long, complicated conversations. There used to be a rule in etiquette books that you should invite four talkers and four listeners to a dinner party. That doesn't work in Ireland, because nobody knows four listeners' Maeve Binchy Maeve Binchy's bestselling novels not only tell wonderful stories, they also give an insight in to how Ireland has changed over the decades, and how people remain the same: they still fall in love, sometimes unsuitably; they still have hopes and dreams; they have deep, long-standing friendships, and some that fall apart. From her earliest writing to her most recent, Maeve's work has included wonderfully nostalgic pieces and also sharp, often witty writing which is insightful and topical. But at the heart of all Maeve's fiction are the people and their relationships with each other. A FEW OF THE GIRLS is a glorious collection of the very best of her writing, full of the warmth, charm and humour that has always been an essential part of all of Maeve's writing.
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  • ATOAU

    The Garden Party and Other Stories (Audio)

    Maeve Binchy

    This title contains four Maeve Binchy short stories, specially commissioned for BBC Radio 4. Maeve Binchy is one of Britain's most popular and bestselling authors, and this collection of four stories from the BBC Radio 4 archive shows her at her most insightful and imaginative. In "The Garden Party", Helen envies her neighbour Debbie Kennedy's garden - and her life - but discovers that things are not always as they seem; while "The Special Sale" sees lonely Yvonne arranging a special lunch for her friend Frank and his children on the day after Christmas."The Sensible Celebration" finds Lorna about to throw a small party to celebrate the decade gone by: but as she plans, she starts to think about her life, and her marriage. Finally, in "Dolly's Mother", the beauty, grace and efficiency of her perfect parent have always made Dolly feel inferior - until the day of her sixteenth birthday. These four stories, never collected together in book form and unique to audio, are read by acclaimed actors Niamh Cusack, Dervla Kirwan, Doreen Hepburn and Stella McCusker.
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  • ATOAT

    Maeve Binchy: No Nightingales, No Snakes (Audio)

    Maeve Binchy

    This title contains full-cast dramatisations of five Maeve Binchy short stories, specially adapted for BBC Radio 4's "Woman's Hour". Ireland is neither cursed with snakes, nor blessed with nightingales, and the characters in Maeve Binchy's fiction occupy the same middle ground. These five stories, specially dramatised for BBC Radio 4, feature modern Irishwomen emerging from a culture where they knew their place into a more hazardous, but more rewarding light. In "The Night People Came In For Something That Was No Trouble", Cara's envy of another couple's disingenuous ease at giving dinner parties spurs her to plan the perfect 'casual' evening down to the last detail - but things don't go as she'd intended. "The Stepson" sees Clare walking on eggshells, taking great care not to try to replace her stepson Simon's dead mother: until she finally attempts to break through his hostile diffidence. "Decisions at Sea" finds Tessa, an overlooked but good-tempered secretary, heading out on a cruise, where she faces a big decision. In "The Answer Machine", Biddy reasons that her family need an answer machine for Christmas, and gives it to them early - but by Christmas, she is beginning to regret the whole idea. And in "By The Time We Get to Clifden", Nessa and her husband Harry are planning their annual break to Clifden, when neighbour Melly seeks their help, and ends up changing their itinerary and their lives. Featuring a full cast including Niamh Cusack, Sam Dale and Harry Towb, these five Maeve Binchy stories are all typically warm, wry and witty.
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  • ATOAQ

    The Homecoming and Other Stories (Audio)

    Maeve Binchy

    This work features four Maeve Binchy short stories, exclusively written for BBC Radio 4. Maeve Binchy is one of Britain's most popular storytellers, and these four tales demonstrate the warmth and compassion that have made her many novels bestsellers. In "Homecoming", read by Sean Campion, the Brennans run Quentin's restaurant in Dublin for the owner, who lives abroad. But what will happen when he suddenly pays a visit? "Telling Stories", read by Joanna Myers, sees Irene's fiance turning up the night before the wedding with a face as white as the dress that is to be worn the next day. Then trouble starts...In "Needy", read by Patricia Hodge, Heather is painfully aware that Valentine's Day declarations of love should be viewed with suspicion, even if the sender is the one she loves.And in "The Interview", read by Kate Binchy, Bessie is deaf and needs a place in a special school. But will she pass the interview? Finely crafted and full of wit and charm, these are stories that no fan of Maeve Binchy will want to be without.
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  • ANMEA

    Chestnut Street (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    A delightful collection of linked stories from No. 1 bestselling author of A WEEK IN WINTER Just round the corner from St Jarlath's Crescent (featured in MINDING FRANKIE) is Chestnut Street. Here, the lives of the residents are revealed in Maeve Binchy's wonderfully compelling tales: Bucket Maguire, the window cleaner, who must do more than he bargained for to protect his son. Nessa Byrne, whose aunt comes to visit from America for six weeks every summer and turns the house - and Nessa's world - upside down. Lilian, the generous girl with a big heart, and the fiance not everyone approves of. And Melly, whose gossip about the neighbours leads to trouble in the form of the fortune teller, 'Madame Magic'...No one rivals Maeve Binchy for stories of warmth, kindness, love, loss - and life not always turning out as expected.
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  • AKDSO

    Maeve's Times (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    'As someone who fell off a chair not long ago trying to hear what they were saying at the next table in a restaurant, I suppose I am obsessively interested in what some might consider the trivia of other people's lives.' Maeve Binchy is well-known for her bestselling novels, the most recent of which was A WEEK IN WINTER. But for many years Maeve was a journalist, writing for the IRISH TIMES. From 'The Student Train' to 'Plane Bores' and 'Bathroom Joggers' to 'When Beckett met Binchy', these articles have all the warmth, wit and humanity of her fiction. Arranged in decades, from the 1960s to the 2000s, and including Maeve's first and last ever piece of writing for the IRISH TIMES, the columns also give a fascinating insight into the author herself. With an introduction written by her husband, the writer Gordon Snell, this collection of timeless writing reminds us of why the leading Irish writer was so universally loved.
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  • ABUQU

    Scarlet Feather (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    Cathy Scarlet and Tom Feather have decided to create the best catering company in Dublin. They have the perfect premises, heaps of talent, and even a few contacts - but not everyone seems as pleased by the idea of 'Scarlet Feather' as they are. Tom's parents are disappointed that he has turned his back on the family business. Cathy's husband buries himself in work, becoming ever more distant, whilst his mother thinks Cathy should stay at home to look after him. And Tom's relationship with his beautiful, ambitious girlfriend becomes fraught as she struggles to realise her dream of becoming a model. As Cathy and Tom strive to maintain their emotional ties amidst catering triumphs and disasters they are supported - and undermined - by an enchanting cast of classic Binchy characters.
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  • ABUQT

    Quentins (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    Every table at Quentins Restaurant has a thousand stories to tell: tales of love, betrayal and revenge. Ella Brady wants to make a documentary about the renowned Dublin restaurant that has captured the spirit of a generation and a city in the years it has been open. In Maeve Binchy's magical QUENTINS you will meet new friends and old: the twins from SCARLET FEATHER, the Signora from EVENING CLASS, Ria from TARA ROAD - and a host of fresh faces. There is Monica, the ever-cheerful Australian waitress, and Blouse Brennan, whose simplicity disguises a sharp mind and a heart of gold. Presiding over Quentins are Patrick and Brenda Brennan, who have made Quentins such a legend. But even they have a story and a sadness which is hidden from the public gaze. As Ella uncovers more of what has gone on, she wonders about the wisdom of bringing it to the screen. Should the restaurant keep its secrets?
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  • ABUQS

    Evening Class (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    The Italian evening class at Mountainview School is like hundreds of others starting up all over the city. But this class has its own special quality - as the focus for the varied hopes and dreams of teacher and pupils alike. Aidan Dunne needs his new evening class project to succeed almost as much as his pupils do. They too are looking for something more: Bill to find a way to keep spendthrift Lizzie at his side and Fran to make sure that young Kathy finds her way out from behind the kitchen sink. The key to their success lies with the Signora. Her passion has drawn her from Ireland to Italy and back home again with a burning desire to share her love of all things Italian - and a secret hidden in her heart ...
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  • ABUQR

    The Copper Beech (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    By the school house at Shancarrig stands a copper beech, its bark scarred with the names and dreams of the pupils who have grown up under its branches. Under Junior Assistant Mistress Maddy Ross's careful gaze the children play, but out of school Maddy's gaze lingers where it shouldn't. Maura Brennan, a bundle of fun from the rough end of town, plays with her pals: leap year baby Eddie Barton, the apple of his mother's eye, and Nessa Ryan, who little realises as she carves his name at the roots of the copper beech on the very last day of school that she'll get a lot more from one of her schoolmates than her first shy kiss. The copper beech is the gateway to Maeve Binchy's marvellous portrait of a small Irish town whose untroubled surface conceals the passions, rivalries, friendships, ambitions and jealousies beneath.
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  • ABTXH

    Lilac Bus (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    Each Friday, Tom Fitzgerald drives the same people home from Dublin to spend the weekend in Rathdoon. Nancy, Dee, Kev and Celia ? each has their own secret story, unknown to their fellow passengers. And of course Tom himself has his own reasons for returning home so regularly? Once again, Maeve Binchy has conjured up a cast of very human characters with real joys and real sadnesses, portrayed with her trademark wit, compassion and warmth.
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  • ABTXG

    Silver Wedding (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    Desmond and Deirdre Doyle will have been married for twenty-five years in October. It falls to the Doyles' eldest daughter, Anna, to decide how best to commemorate her parents' Silver Wedding. No use asking her sister Helen, living in her London convent, or her brother Brendan, who has chosen another form of exile on a bleak farm in the West of Ireland. But it is unthinkable not to have a party, even though for the Doyles, family occasions are more difficult than for most. For each of them is keeping up a front, nursing a secret wound, or smarting over a hidden betrayal. And as the day draws nearer, so the tension mounts, until finally the guests gather at the party itself...
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  • ABTXF

    Circle of Friends (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    Big, generous-hearted Benny and the elfin Eve Malone have been best friends throughout their childhoods in sleepy Knockglen. When they both go to study in Dublin, they meet a circle of friends that includes handsome Jack Foley and the selfish but beautiful Nan Mahon, whose ambition will drag them all into trouble. As Knockglen is surprised into new life, the two girls, Benny and Eve, discover that among the many distractions of growing up, true friendship is the greatest gift of all.
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  • ABTXE

    Dublin 4 (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    A society hostess entertains her husband's mistress to dinner; a country girl savours the delights of city life; a student faces the dilemma of unmarried pregnancy; and a drink-ridden photographer tries to relaunch a shattered career...This vintage collection of stories from the bestselling author of "Light a Penny Candle" and "Circle of Friends" is Maeve Binchy at her best - her trademark warmth, wit and compassion are unmistakable.
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  • ABRWM

    Minding Frankie (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    Baby Frankie is born into an unusual family. Her mother is desperate to find someone to take care of her child and she doesn't have much time. Noel doesn't seem to be the most promising of fathers but despite everything, he could well be Frankie's best hope. As for Lisa, she is prepared to give up everything for the man she loves; surely he's going to love her back? And Moira is having none of it. She knows what's right, and has the power to change the course of Frankie's life ...but Moira is hiding secrets of her own. MINDING FRANKIE is a story about unconventional families, relationships which aren't quite what they seem, and the child at the heart of everyone's lives...

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  • AAIDK

    Heart and Soul (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    Clara Casey has more than enough on her plate. Her daughters are a handful and Clara, a senior cardiac specialist, has a new job to cope with...For Ania, meeting Clara Casey is a miracle: she had never intended to leave her beloved Poland, but after the love of her life has turned sour, her world seems rather empty. Perhaps a new job in a new country will mend her broken heart? Declan is looking forward to joining the clinic - but what should have been a straightforward six-month posting brings him far more than he expected. Then there's Father Brian Flynn, whose life is turned upside down when his reputation is threatened; and the beautiful, cheerful nurse, Fiona, who can't leave her troubled past behind...
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  • AAIBW

    Whitethorn Woods (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    The town of Rossmore is a special place, full of character and charm. Nestled beside the Whitethorn Woods, the town has grown since the days when it was small and friendly and everyone knew everyone else. But it still has the woods, with the well dedicated to St Ann, where generations have come to pray or make wishes or just to look back at the pretty little town. Which is why there is going to be such a fuss about the plans for the new road, cutting through Whitethorn Woods. The people of Rossmore are divided. No one is more concerned than the curate, Father Brian Flynn, who has no idea which faction to support. Surely Neddy Nolan's family should take the compensation being offered for their land? But wasn't Neddy's mother given a cure at the well many years ago? And what about the childless London woman who came to Whitethorn Woods begging the saint for help, with unexpected consequences?
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  • AACRR

    Firefly Summer (Paperback)

    Maeve Binchy

    Kate and John Ryan have four children, of whom the eldest are Michael and Dara. Their small town is peaceful and friendly, an unchanging background for a golden childhood. In long, hot summers Michael and Dara and their friends fish and swim or play in the ivy-clad ruins of Fernscourt, when the great house burnt down during the Troubles...No one in Mountfern has the slightest inkling of what it will mean when the ruins are bought by Patrick O'Neill, an Irish American with a dream in his heart and a great deal of money in his pocket. It is not until the very end of this drama, with its interlocking stories of love lost and won, ambitions nurtured and secrets betrayed, that Patrick O'Neill will understand the irony and the significance of his great dream for Mountfern.
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