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Author - Maeve Binchy
Maeve Binchy wrote a series of short stories about the passengers of the Lilac Bus.

Author - Maeve Binchy

Maeve Binchy was born in 1939 in Dalkey, a small village outside Dublin. She graduated from University College in Dublin and then became a teacher. She worked for a time in Israel and, while there, had a letter published in The Irish Times, earning her £18 – more than her weekly salary. She then went on to pursue a career as a journalist. Maeve married the love of her life, children’s author Gordon Snell, in 1977 after the pair met at Broadcasting House, the home of the BBC.

Maeve Binchy’s literary career began in 1978 when her book of short stories Central Line was published. In total she had 11 books of short stories published and also wrote plays for radio, TV and the stage. But she is most famous for her 16 novels, several of which were best sellers and 3 of which have been made into films. She died in 2012 at the age of 73.

Maeve Binchy is unmistakeably Irish but did you know that she married an Englishman? Test your knowledge on Maeve Binchy and discover some more interesting nuggets of information in this quiz.

1.
In which Binchy novel does the glamorous Helen marry Martin, though still pining for Louis?
The Glass Lake
The Glass Pond
The Glass River
The Glass Stream
It's set in the Irish village of Lough Glass
2.
Binchy's novel Tara Road features two women, who have never met, who trade houses. One is Irish; what nationality is the other?
American
Canadian
English
Scottish
Tara Road was made into a film in 2005 in which Maeve Binchy can be seen in the first scene at Colm's restaurant
3.
What is the title of Binchy's first novel, published in 1982?
Light a New Candle
Light an Old Candle
Light a Penny Candle
Light a Twopenny Candle
Before Light a Penny Candle Maeve had had two books of short stories published - Central Line in 1978 and Victoria Line in 1980
4.
Which 1988 novel centres around an anniversary party?
Silver Wedding
Ruby Wedding
Golden Wedding
Diamond Wedding
Silver Wedding tells the story of Deirdre and Desmond Doyle, their family and friends and some guilty secrets
5.
Minnie Driver played Bernadette 'Benny' Hogan in a 1995 film version of which Binchy novel?
Circle of Fame
Circle of Fire
Circle of Forgiveness
Circle of Friends
Driver put on 30 lbs for the role
6.
The 1997 novel Evening Class features a group of students studying what?
French
Italian
Spanish
Turkish
The setting is the Mountainview School, Dublin
7.
What colour is the bus in the title of Binchy's 1984 short story collection?
Indigo
Lavender
Lilac
Violet
The stories are all about a group of seven people from the village of Rathdoon, who work in Dublin and return home every weekend on the Lilac Bus
8.
Binchy was born in which small town near Dublin?
Dalkey
Doolin
Drogheda
Dundrum
Dalkey is the hometown of two Irish novelists: Maeve Binchy and Hugh Leonard. It is also popular with musicians with Bono, The Edge, Enya, Chris de Burgh and Van Morrison all owning houses there
9.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Binchy was a journalist on which newspaper?
The Irish Mail
The Irish Post
The Irish Telegraph
The Irish Times
As well as being a journalist, Maeve also worked as a teacher of history, Latin and French
10.
Who played Marilyn in the 2005 version of Tara Road?
Brenda Fricker
Keira Knightley
Andie McDowell
Emma Thompson
Brenda Fricker is in the film but she plays Mona, not Marilyn

 

Author:  Tony Rennick

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