Authors: Maeve Binchy
Light a Penny Candle
The Lilac Bus
Circle of Friends
The Copper Beech
The Glass Lake
Nights of Rain and Stars
Heart and Soul
A Week in Winter
Aches & Pains
The Maeve Binchy Writers' Club
THIS IS A BORZOI BOOK PUBLISHED BY ALFRED A. KNOPF
Copyright Â© 2015 by Gordon Snell
All rights reserved. Published in the United States by Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Penguin Random House LLC, New York. Orginally published in hardcover in Great Britain by Orion Books, an imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd., London, in 2015.
Knopf, Borzoi Books, and the colophon are registered trademarks of Penguin Random House LLC.
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
[Short stories. Selections]
A few of the girls / Maeve Binchy. â First U.S. edition.
pages ; cm
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.
Cover illustration by William Low
Cover design by Carol Devine Carson
Maeve's mind was always full of stories. In all the years we sat writing, at each end of the long desk in front of our study window, I never saw her gazing at a blank page, wondering how to start.
She plunged at the keyboard, like a swimmer into the sea, typing at breakneck speed, and without pausing to correct any errors in punctuation or spelling. If the devilish machine suddenly disappeared a page or two of text, she didn't spend any time on technical fiddling. She said it was quicker to write the whole section again, there and then.
And the stories and characters emerged, shaped and described with her smooth, straightforward, and sensitive style. It seemed almost effortless, as if she had sat down to tell you eagerly about something that had just happened.
Maeve always said that she didn't write any better if she wrote more slowlyâand she talked in the same way, the words almost tumbling out in their haste to be said. Storytelling was her natural and magical talent, and as well as her novels and books of short stories, she wrote stories for newspapers and magazines. I knew that her many devoted readers would be delighted to see in book form so many stories they hadn't come across before.
So here they are in this new collection,
A Few of the Girls,
selected and gathered together by her agent Christine Green, editors Juliet Ewers, Carole Baron, and Pauline Proctor. The stories are just part of the truly extraordinary output of Maeve's powerful and compassionate imagination, and the great storytelling legacy she has left to us all.