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4.3 out of 5 stars143
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 26 November 2013
Typical Maeve Binchy - very enjoyable and a feel good read. Made me sad to think there will be no more from this lovely lady.
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Maeve Binchy was a guiding light in the writing of women’s fiction. I have read her novels, her quick reads, her short stories and some of the item she contributed as a journalist. I’ve literally enjoyed hours of pleasure from the writings of her pen, so when I had the chance to read this book in return for an honest review I was excited, as I was sure it would add to her whole package of writing and that I’d learn more about her. And I was right. It’s easy to see that Maeve was keenly observant and had a great eye for the little details that made her characters so endearing – like friends you come to know so well and enjoy catching up with. She wrote with great kindness and empathy, with humour and with flair. I was not at all disappointed.

With an introduction written by Gordon Snell, her devoted husband, he includes a biography of her early life and career in teaching, details of her travels abroad and her work in journalism. The book includes stories, memories and anecdotes from the early sixties right through to the 2000’s. There’s political comment, articles about royalty and wars, the nightmare of school trips, about her life and occasional visits to a kibbutz, commentary on medical no-no’s, news articles and a whole hotchpotch about the stuff of life and the joys of living it. It was great to dip in and out of, with some articles being very short.

There are also notes on Maeve’s time with The Irish Times. Upon her appointment the then news editor is quoted as saying ‘Won’t she be great crack to work with? And she’s a brilliant writer!’ Such wise words full of insight spoken spontaneously. She was a great writer and it was my pleasure to review this collection.
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on 12 July 2014
I didn't know what to expect when I got this book. I thought maybe it was one she had written just before she'd died and was published posthumously. However, it is a collection of newspaper articles and short stories that Maeve had written over her whole career. So, instead of being a story, which I have always enjoyed reading by her, you find out more about Maeve, the person. Therefore, it's very different to her novels. Worth reading, however, you would be disappointed if you thought it was another story!
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on 7 October 2013
I really enjoyed this book. It had some laugh out loud moments. A varied collection of stories which were very well written . Just sad it wasn't bigger.The book scans several decades and tells the reader a lot about the author as a person as well as the writer. She was such a brilliant story teller and will be very much missed.
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VINE VOICEon 27 September 2013
I love everything that Maeve writes. So to read all about her and her struggles through life is wonderful. She was the same age as me and also very tall like me. I too found life very hard being taller than all the other girls. Well done Gordon. I shall enjoy reading and reading this book.
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on 6 October 2013
Maeve in her writings seems to use events that by some magical process her readers have experienced themselves. Her depiction of them is superb and realistic. She writes as one of us and thus is a tremendous communicator - exactly what a writer should be.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 29 October 2015
I bought the audible version.

A patchwork of people, events and random musings collected together from articles by Maeve Binchy over the last 40 years or so. Thoughtful, humorous, honest, sometimes poignant but always written in her particular 'voice'. She had a particular skill in pinpointing foibles and affectations, was always self effacing and paints a vibrant and lively picture, whatever she writes about. A real trip down memory lane with articles about Royal weddings, politicians, Dublin and London life and much more. Interesting and enjoyable.
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on 4 November 2013
As I have read all of Maeve's books, which I thoroughly enjoyed I just expected more of the same. In many was it was but parts did not live up to the Maeve as I think of her, but then again I suppose there were times in her life that did not give her great joy also. I would still recommend my friends to read it as not everyone thinks the same, thank goodness.
I just feel sad that we have lost her, I cannot find anyone to match Maeve's writting which could make you laugh and cry all on the same page.
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on 13 April 2014
just not what we usually expect from Maeve Im really sorry to say BUT its true in my opinion anyway .I felt I was reading a diary or notes that she had left in an old handbag and forgotten about never intending to print or share with the public .I still read anything and everything I find with the authors name .I suppose Im searching for another Light a Penny Candle and the like .Maeve really is so sadly missed
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on 22 August 2015
Having read Maeve Binchy books over a number of years I was looking forward to an entertaining, if undemanding read. This novel failed to engage me on any level. I struggled for 4 chapters in the hope of some thread to hook me but it failed miserably and I gave up and deleted it from my kindle. That will be the last time I buy a Maeve Binchy book. She is way past her best.
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