Wednesday, August 1, 2012

In Honour of Maeve Binchy

This picture links to her obituary on The Guardian website.

So all day yesterday I kept hearing about how Maeve Binchy passed away at the age of 72. I have been a fan of her books for quite a few years now. I find myself always immersed in her stories of such lasting friendships and some great romantic entanglements in some others. The one thing that really got me into her books was that all of them took place somewhere different than I was used to (Ireland). Over the years I started to fall more in love with chick lit novels that were by Irish and English writers, they were always funnier and they had a different feel compared to the American writers.

So today I am going to mention some of my favourite books by Maeve Binchy.

Synopsis From Maeve Binchy's Website:

Big, soft-featured Benny, an adored only daughter, and Eve, the little bird-like orphan brought up by the nuns, are best friends in the small Irish town of Knockglen.  On their first day at University College, Dublin, an accident brings the pair together with fellow students Nan Malone and Jack Foley, and new friendships are quickly struck.  But beneath their carefree student existence, trouble is brewing for the circle of friends.  Benny, the good-natured clown of the group, always seems to draw the short straw in life, while Nan, selfish and very attractive, takes what she wants without expecting to pay for it.  And Eve, intensely loyal to Benny, and resentful of Nan’s careless optimism, becomes obsessed with the need to avenge Benny’s disappointments.

Synopsis From Goodreads:

With the insight, humor, and compassion we have come to expect from her, Maeve Binchy tells a story of family, friends, patients, and staff who are part of a heart clinic in a community caught between the old and the new Ireland.

Dr. Clara Casey has been offered the thankless job of establishing the underfunded clinic and agrees to take it on for a year. She has plenty on her plate already—two difficult adult daughters and the unwanted attentions of her ex-husband—but she assembles a wonderfully diverse staff devoted to helping their demanding, often difficult patients.

Before long the clinic is established as an essential part of the community, and Clara must decide whether or not to leave a place where lives are saved, courage is rewarded, and humor and optimism triumph over greed and self-pity.

Heart and Soul is Maeve Binchy at her storytelling best.

I haven't read that many of her books but of those that I have read these two were my favourite. Maeve was a beautiful storyteller and I will definitely remember her books for years to come. If you haven't read any of her books before, I definitely suggest trying one of these two (though I have heard many good things of her last book, MINDING FRANKIE). 

What were some of your favourite Maeve Binchy books? 

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