Light a Penny Candle by Maeve BinchyEvacuated from Blitz-battered London, shy and genteel Elizabeth White is sent to stay with the boisterous OConnors in Kilgarret, Ireland. It is the beginning of an unshakeable bond between Elizabeth and Aisling OConnor, a friendship which will endure through twenty turbulent years of change and chaos, joy and sorrow, soaring dreams and searing betrayals...
Writing with warmth, wit and great compassion, Maeve Binchy tells a magnificent story of the lives and loves of two women, bound together in a friendship that nothing could tear asunder - not even the man who threatened to come between them forever.
Gordon Snell and Peter Sheridan - Behind the Scenes Interview - Light A Penny Candle -
Maeve Binchy's novel Light a Penny Candle gets a charming stage makeover
Thank you! Perhaps marriage did destroy everyone. It could be nature's way of preventing people from enjoying themselves too much while on earth. Aisling's hearty mum Eileen, married to hard-working shopkeeper Sean, is Violet's old school chum. So Elizabeth happily joins the clan, away from her own jumpy home, where Violet is making plans to leave George for adoring Harry. But troubles between parents and children begin to flower at the O'Connors'.
This was Maeve Binchy's first novel, published in It deals with complex issues surrounding marriage and motherhood, including abortion. But, fundamentally, it is a hymn in praise of female friendship. Decades earlier, Aisling's mother, Eileen, was dispatched to an English school to escape the Irish Civil War and was befriended and socially protected by Elizabeth's mother. The favour is now returned. New to Independent.
It is also significantly uneven, with the story of a life-long friendship between two young girls allowing the predominance of one character Aisling, played with excellent timing by Kate Gilmore over the other Elizabeth, played as well as possible by India Mullen.
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