'Absorbing and delightful' Elizabeth Buchan, Sunday Times
'For anyone who likes good storytelling ... it is like being reunited with old friends' Sunday Express
Every table at Quentins restaurant in Dublin has a thousand stories to tell. The staff and customers all have tales of their own, and the restaurant owners themselves have had more than their fair share of trials to cope with.
Now Ella Brady wants to make a documentary about the renowned restaurant but as she uncovers more of what has gone on, she questions the wisdom of bringing it to the screen. And when she is forced to confront a devastating dilemma in her own life, Ella wonders if some stories should not be told . . .
Superb fiction from the No.1 bestselling author.
Fans of the bestselling Binchy will be grateful that the basic formula is still intact decent people pulling through hard times and that some favorite characters from previous novels reappear: Cathy Scarlet from Scarlet Feather, Nora from Evening Class, Ria from Tara Road and others. When Dubliner Ella Brady's affair with a married financial consultant turns sour he bilks his clients of their hard-earned money and then hightails it to Spain she decides to throw herself into something productive: she agrees to help with a documentary about Quentins, a once-modest Dublin restaurant whose increasing success and sophistication over the past 30 years mirrors the changing fortunes of the city itself. Ella collects stories of customers who recall celebrating life's milestones at Quentins. These vignettes (about a man who learns he's to be a grandfather, a girl who finishes school with honors, and other regular folks) are meant to fill out the too-thin tale, but most of them end a little too neatly to be satisfying. Binchy doesn't exactly trade in suspense (can there ever be any doubt that a Binchy heroine will do the right thing? Or that goodness will ultimately be rewarded?), but this novel is more tepid than other works in her oeuvre. Still, readers who love hardworking, honest-living characters with strong values can get their fix here.