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Quentins [Hardcover]

Maeve Binchy
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (63 customer reviews)

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Book Description

22 Aug 2002

Every table at Quentins restaurant has a thousand stories to tell: tales of love, betrayal and revenge, of hope and despair. The staff who come and go have stories of their own, and the restaurant itself has had times when it looked set fair for success and others when it seemed as if it must close in failure. 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, 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. The whole place is presided over by the apparently imperturbable 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. Are there some stories which are too sacred to be told? Should the restaurant keep its secrets?

Product details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Orion; First Edition edition (22 Aug 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0752851659
  • ISBN-13: 978-0752851655
  • Product Dimensions: 16.5 x 24.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (63 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,002,923 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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 twenty 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 Gáis 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.

Product Description

Amazon Review

Maeve Binchy delivers a timely and topical tale on the fickle nature of docu-soaps in Quentin's in an age where everyday people are becoming overnight celebrities via the medium of television,. Ella Brady is a documentary film-maker who wants to bring the tale of the eponymous Dublin restaurant to the screen. Quentin's has had its fair share of ups and downs over the years and has become the meeting point for a lot of characters, including some familiar faces from previous Binchy novels. As Ella makes more and more headway with her documentary, the secrets, betrayals and stories of love that emerge make her question whether or not she wants to bring the tale of Quentin's to the screen after all; especially as she is also forced to confront a devastating dilemma from her own past.

Regarded by many as the true queen of the romantic Irish drama, Binchy has once again produced another fine page-turner that will please her army of loyal fans and hopefully win her many more. She has a real eye for character and exploring the often painful choices people are forced to make in their everyday lives. This is a tale of normal people, ordinary folk and the heartaches that have made them who they are. Fans will welcome the return of some familiar Binchy characters and Ella is a strong, likeable heroine, a woman who, in exploring the lives of these people, is forced to consider some choices she has made in her own life. So make a reservation at Quentin's, sit back and relax--you'll be in very good company. --Jane Warren


You Magazine MAIL ON SUNDAY - 2,000 word extract & off-the-page offer torun 18 August. SUNDAY EXPRESS Magazine - New short story by Maeve to run early September. WOMAN'S WEEKLY - New short story by Maeve & off-the-page promo offer to run in issue on sale 6 August (shelf-life 6 weeks). WOMAN'S OWN - New short story by Maeve with giveaway to be serialised over 2 issues: 2 Sept on sale 27 Aug & 9 Sept on sale 3 Sept. With TV advertising.. SAINSBURY'S Magazine - Feature by Maeve on changing face of Dublin through restaurants for September issue , on sale 23 August. FAMILY CIRCLE, WOMAN & HOME - Reviews in September issue. THAT'S LIFE - New short story for Christmas issueTHE EXPRESS - My Therapy slot to run week of 19 August INDEPENDENT ON SUNDAYHow we Met with Douglas Kennedy REVIEWS: 'Absorbing and delightful...In pinning down the humdrum and the ordinary - debts, the drama of a busy kitchen, awedding, the ache of childlessness - Binchy makes the point that the profound shift in emotion or spirit can take place while peeling potatoes or waitressing in a restaurant. Her multitude of eaders stuck doing much the same instinctively feel this'Elizabeth Buchan, SUNDAY TIMES 'All the warmth, humour andinsights you expect from Maeve Binchy's writing are here' CHOICE 'Full of cha

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank you for writing.........! 31 Aug 2002
By A Customer
I discovered earlier this year that Maeve Binchy was writing another book and I was delighted!
Again, I had my partner camped outside the book shop on the day of publication and once he brought 'Quentins' home that was the last he saw of me for the next couple of days whilst I disappeared back into the world surrounding Tara Road!
I certainly wasn't disappointed (well, only when the book ended!)
It was so easy to absorb myself back into Maeve Binchy's style and it was wonderful to catch up with some of the characters from previous novels.
Pull up a chair, make a pot of tea and settle down to a wonderful read!
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Binchy winner 26 Sep 2002
By A Customer
Quentins was a great surprise to me because I had heard that Scarlet Feather would be Ms Binchy's final book. I'm so glad that either I was misinformed or the author decided to surprise her fans with another book. I enjoyed this one very much and as she always does, Ms Binchy makes us care about the characters she creates. There are really very few contemporary authors that make the reader want to know what happens to the characters beyond the final page. What makes Quentins a particular delight is the reappearance of characters from Scarlet Feather, Tara Road and Evening Class. In spite of her likeability, I was prepared to become very cross with Ella, the main character in Quentins, but in the end, she does the right thing and made me want to stand and cheer her gumption. I've always preferred Ms. Binchy's earlier books set in the 50's - they seemed to have more depth and complexity than the later books, but in spite of that, I give Quentins five stars for an entertaining and very satisfying read.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Maeve Binchy to date ! 30 Aug 2002
By A Customer
What a fantastic book , I have enjoyed all Maeve Binchy previous novels but this is the best yet . It is based around a Dublin Restaurant and follows the life of Ella Brady who is making a film about the restaurant. The main story follows Ella , but the book also has mini stories of some of the staff , people who have eaten in the restaurant & friends & family of Ella. I could not put this book down & finished it in 2 days . If you want a book that makes you feelgood, smile & cry this is the one.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable read 28 Aug 2002
This new book from Maeve Binchy is a welcome surprise, since "Scarlet Feather" was said to be her last novel. "Quentins" focuses on a new character, Ella Brady, but revolves around the restaurant Quentins, which has appeared in her last 2-3 books. Ella is working to film a documentary on the legendary Dublin restaurant, and many previous Binchy characters (including Nora, Aiden, Brenda, and Patrick from "Evening Class," Ria from "Tara Road," Tom, Cathy, and the twins from "Scarlet Feather") make welcome appearances. The story revolving around Ella and her married boyfriend is less engaging than the stories told about Quentins. At times the construction of the novel seems a little loose, as if possibly the author had written a number of short stories and decided to combine them into a book; however, it is not confusing to read once you realize what she's doing. She still maintains her wonderful sense of humour, and many of the restaurant patrons' stories are touching.
I met Maeve Binchy several years ago after the release of "Evening Class." She was a warm and friendly person (just like her books!) and said that the ending to "Evening Class" was the only one of her endings that she was really pleased with. It seems as though her later books (written in present day as opposed to the 1950s as her previous novels were) have a more upbeat tone and a requisite happy ending. I prefer her earlier work, which has a little more of a dark side and an edge.
However, "Quentins" will hold your interest, and you'll be glad to sit down once again with another Maeve Binchy novel!
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant Binchy 23 Aug 2002
By A Customer
My husband had this book delivered to me this morning, it is now early evening and I have read this marvellous book from cover to cover,savouring each and every word. I finished the book only disappointed to realise that I couldn't actually make a dinner reservation at Quentins! For Maeve Binchy fans this book is a real treasure because as well as being introduced to a wealth of new characters you get glimpses into the ongoing lives of characters from previous books. For readers new to Binchy's work Quentin's is still an excellent read leaving the reader with the option to check out Scarlet Feather, Tara Road and Evening Class. Quentin's is like the coffee course of a fabulous meal which the three aforementioned books are the starter , main course and desert - it is the icing on the cake.I liked this book because the character's become real and cosy and Binchy offers short spin off stories within the main story - many threads of a magically woven web.
A delightful read but clear your diary as you won't be able to put this one down!
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Unexpected Bonus 3 Sep 2002
I was sceptical about Maeve Binchy. I felt certain that her novels would be very slushy. I finally came to her via the television series "Echoes". To my surprise, my husband was watching it. When I attempted to pour scorn he pointed out that he spent a lot of his childhood holidays in Eire staying with an uncle. He knows far more about Ireland than I do, as I have only been there twice. Maeve Binchy knows whereof she writes. After watching that series I started reading the books. Maeve's characterisations are clever, acute and accurate - the only difference between her and other novelists is that she looks at the characters with a kinder, more tolerant eye. Even the most ridiculous people are dealt with in this way - there is a total absence of cruelty. I believed that "Scarlet Feather" was to be her last novel. I bought "Aches and Pains" and learned a great deal from it. Then, an e-mail came from Amazon about Quentins. I bought it and found that many old friends have been revisited and their lives are as absorbing as ever. I think that the author's great gift is that she imparts a sense of continuity -that these people's lives have gone on, that they have survived and made new lives. There is nothing soap-opera-ish about this, just a feeling of natural progression. There is also the feeling of wanting to give the sweet, likeable Ms Brady all the best advice about dealing with the caddish Richardson, all the while knowing that in her position one would have felt, and probably done, the same. Also, what a refreshing look at Ireland - now a more prosperous, interesting place. This, I am sure, is why I read Maeve Binchy - no heroes, no heroines, just people with all their good and bad points, just living their lives. Fascinating! I thoroughly recommend this unexpected addition to my collection.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars great easy read
Believable characters in a flowing plausible story. Would recommend it as a great, not too taxing holiday read. Really enjoyable.
Published 23 days ago by kath salter
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 1 month ago by Julie Frost
3.0 out of 5 stars A little disappointing
I bought this book (two CDs got lost in the post) because I wanted to know what happened to the characters in Scarlet Feather. Read more
Published 3 months ago by A. Hodgson
5.0 out of 5 stars Great read, good pace
Could not put it down. Such a brilliant storyteller, a little of everything, comedy, romance, drama and hint of pathos. Mrs Binchy never disappoints.
Published 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars brilliant
Enjoyed the book some laughs as usualoliday from writer without being daft or silly cracking read will read again holiday
Published 5 months ago by Mrs. Jennifer Griffiths
5.0 out of 5 stars Have recommended to others
I felt I worked in the resteraunt tasted their food and knew each customer personally. I was totally involved with everyone
Published 5 months ago by Bev Young
5.0 out of 5 stars As always maeve writes the most wonderful story
Loved every minute of it have been reading it all day could not put it down sorry it ended enjoy
Published 6 months ago by Ann Griffiths
5.0 out of 5 stars Engaging story
Yet another enjoyable story by Maeve Binchy. So clever how she creates a selection of characters and interweaves them through the story. Read more
Published 7 months ago by MRS Shirley MCLAURIN
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful
Another wonderful Maeve Binchy book, story line keeps you going right until the end. Lots of old characters popping in too.
Published 8 months ago by Fraser Bradshaw
5.0 out of 5 stars Quentins by Maeve Binchy
I really enjoyed this audio book. Maeve Binchy has been one of my favourite authors for many years and this story did not disappoint.
Published 9 months ago by Jane Austin
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