About RTÉ Television
The Afternoon Show
The Afternoon ShowRTÉ One, Weekdays, 4.00pm

Adult Book Club February

Tuesday, 20 February 2007


Today is our February bookclub. The Bookclub will be reviewing "Whitethorn Woods" by Maeve Binch and we will introduce the book choices for February's book club.

Maria Dickenson, Book Club Chair
Maria Dickenson has always been a keen book lover. She started out in the world of books as a librarian, but is now working for Easons where she is a buyer in head office. She is a committee member of the Bookseller's Association and the Society of Publishers in Ireland, and is a member of a bookclub herself.  Her favourite reads include Audrey Niffenegger's 'The Time Traveller's Wife', Ian McEwan's 'Atonement' and Alice Sebold's 'The Lovely Bones'.

Lorraine Daly
Áine McDonough
Pauline Murray
Bernie Caulfield

Book being reviewed today on the show:
"Whitethorn Woods" by Maeve Binchy (Orion ISBN: 0752873350)
Maeve Binchy's latest book is set in Rossmore, a small and once sleepy town on the brink of change. The town is famous for a well dedicated to St Ann, nestled in the nearby Whitethorn Woods. When a new road threatens to cut through the woods and destroy the well, the community is divided: is this a road to progress or the destruction of everything the town holds dear? Maeve interweaves the stories of the people of Rossmore with the battle over the well - from those who feel that St Ann has answered their prayers, to those who are keen to profit from the road, plus numerous other warm and quirky stories. From the lonely office worker who cobbles together a bank holiday party, to the dark secrets of a woman whose yearning for a child led her to steal a baby, from the Irish-American girl determined to find her roots, to the woman who arranged the murder of a love rival: all of humanity is here, at its best and its worst.  Parish Priest Father Flynn does his best to guide his parishioners even though he is unsure about the well, but in the end, the decision will rest in the hands of quiet, sweet, seemingly simple Neddy Nolan.

About the author: Maeve Binchy
Novelist, short story writer, and journalist, Maeve Binchy was born in Dublin on March 28,1940, grew up in Dalkey, and attended the Holy Child Convent in Killiney. She later did a history degree at University College, Dublin and taught in various girls' schools, while writing her first travel articles in the summer holidays. This led to her employment by the Irish Times in 1969. She soon became a popular columnist, writing twice-weekly articles distinguished by a quirky, self-deprecating humour. She was woman's editor during the first days of Irish feminism. She later moved to London, where she met and married Gordon Snell, a BBC presenter and later writer of children's books. Whitethorn Woods is her 14th novel. She has also published several collections of short stories. Many of her novels are set in Ireland and deal with themes of tensions between urban and rural life. She currently lives in Dalkey with her husband.

Options for February bookclub
Book A : "Two Caravans" by Maria Lewycka (Fig Tree ISBN: 978-0670916375)
Book B : "In the Woods" by Tana French (Hodder and Stoughton ltd ISBN: 978-0340924747)
Book C :  "Carry Me Down" by MJ Hyland (Canongate ISBN: 978-1841957340)

"Two Caravans" by Maria Lewycka (Fig Tree ISBN: 978-0670916375)
'Two Caravans' is the second novel by the author of the hugely popular 'A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian'. Full of the same quirky humour, it is set among a group of immigrant strawberry pickers, and is populated with lively and warm characters. Their world is not an easy one, but their stories are told with a lightness of touch that makes this a very entertaining read.

"In the Woods" by Tana French (Hodder and Stoughton ltd ISBN: 978-0340924747)
Three children go out to play in the woods, but only one returns.with no memory of the day's events, and his shoes full of blood. That child grows up to become a detective, but his life begins to unravel when he is faced with a case alarmingly similar to his own.  'In the Woods' is a rich and atmospheric psychological crime novel, from a very promising new author.

"Carry Me Down" by MJ Hyland (Canongate ISBN: 978-1841957340)
'Carry Me Down' is a story of a childhood, set in County Wexford. Twelve year-old John Egan is struggling with adolescence, and the gradual break-up of his home life. He clings to the belief that he can always detect a lie as he searches for his own truth and reality. This is a sad and beautifully written tale that was nominated for the Booker Prize.

Price of books: Book prices may vary from shop to shop.

"Whitethorn Woods" by Maeve Binchy (Orion ISBN: 0752882082)  SPECIAL BORDERS PRICE €13.43 (While stocks last)
Review copies provided by Publisher

 (Books provided courtesy of Borders Books, Blanchardstown)
"Two Caravans" by Maria Lewycka (Fig Tree ISBN: 978-0670916375)
Borders Price €12.95

"In the Woods" by Tana French (Hodder and Stoughton ltd ISBN: 978-0340924747)
Borders Price €13.99

"Carry Me Down" by MJ Hyland (Canongate ISBN: 978-1841957340)
Borders Price €11.95 (3 for 2 offer)

Book Club Vote
Lines close Wednesday at 3.45pm

How to vote
Call 1512 71 70 71 and follow the instructions
The cost is 25c.
Text BOOK A, BOOK B or BOOK C to 53555.
Texts cost 25cent.