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Tara Road by Maeve Binchy

Tara Road

by Maeve Binchy

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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3,766472,027 (3.66)43
  1. 00
    A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler (thea-block)
    thea-block: Common themes and tones run throughout both stories: home-town feel; descriptions of the lifetimes of somewhat ordinary/somewhat extraordinary people; love and loss, regret and gratefulness, parents and children.

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English (43)  Dutch (2)  Spanish (2)  All languages (47)
Showing 1-5 of 43 (next | show all)
I always love a Maeve Binchy book. In fact, this is the second time I have read this one. She was an excellent writer and you feel as though you really get to know her characters. Her plots are always interesting and keep you focused on the storyline all the way to the end of the book. I was especially concerned about Danny and Ria and if their marriage would survive. The house swapping between Dublin and the United States made for an enjoyable adventure and provided escapes for some of the characters who had problems they were engrossed in. I'm looking forward to reading one of Binchy's books monthly next year. It's always nice to read them with some friends as they provide interesting discussion throughout the book. I would highly recommend Binchy's books to those who would like to visit Ireland. ( )
  EadieB | Nov 29, 2018 |
This book is a little different from Binchy's usual in that part of it takes place in the USA. Ria Lynch from Tara Road, Dublin exchanges houses with Marilyn Vine of a college town in Connecticut. From the inside cover "They borrow each other's houses, and during the course of that magical summer they find themselves borrowing something of each other's lives, until a story which began with loss and suffering grows into a story of discovery, unexpected friendships and new hope. By the time Ria and Marilyn eventually meet, they find that they have altered the course of each other's lives forever." This is a good read. ( )
  gypsysmom | May 10, 2018 |
Oh! What a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.

The only deadly sin that was not addressed was, perhaps, gluttony (but even the sister's heroin addiction may have been the candidate.) All the lies, deceit and half-truths bring our heroine to her new endeavor -a life without her husband, starting a new business with the help of her "best friend."

Danny never rang true with me....doubtful that he will be true to Bernadette, either. Rosemary, for all of her prowess in the business world, how she could live with herself as Ria's best friend and Danny's paramour?

Ria is so naïve and gullible. The best thing she did was agree to the house vacation with Marilyn. It is important to realize that you are your own person, not just a mother, wife or friend first.

It was 600+ pages of a soap opera. Thank goodness, it's over! ( )
  sraelling | Feb 2, 2018 |
I enjoyed this book, sat up late to finish it, yet I don't think I'll want to read it again.

Binchy spends the first half of the book setting up the background to the story, showing us the characters as they become friends through their jobs and gradually get married and have children. The crisis then comes when Ria's husband leaves her for another women - something that took her totally by surprise as she hadn't even realised he was having an affair.

While shell-shocked by this discovery, she is contacted out of the blue by an American woman wanting to do a house swap for a couple of months. Marilyn has her own personal crisis to deal with and needs to get away from everything.

Getting to know each other's friends/family and live in a new setting for a while helps both women take a fresh look at their lives and find ways to move forward.

Binchy's characters are neither wimps nor superwomen. They are women who choose to take control of their lives and do the best that they are able.

One of the good things about this novel is that the 'other woman' and her mother are not demonized. Ria's children actually get on with them in spite of intending to dislike them. ( )
  JudithProctor | Sep 8, 2016 |
Such a wonder heartwarming, addictive story. My favorite of all of the Maeve Binchy novels. 10 stars ( )
  Icewineanne | Aug 4, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 43 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Maeve Binchyprimary authorall editionscalculated
Mons, AnnetTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Voor mijn liefste Gordon, met heel mijn hart
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Ria's mother had always been very fond of film stars.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0385341814, Paperback)

Oprah Book Club® Selection, September 1999: Against all odds, two newlyweds manage to buy the house of their dreams. In 1982, property speculation is beginning to be a big, big thing in Dublin--and their street is very much in an up-and-coming part of town. "They laughed and hugged each other. Danny Lynch from the broken-down cottage in the back of beyond and Ria Johnson from the corner house in the big, shabby estate were not only living like gentry in a big Tara Road mansion, they were actually debating what style of dining table to buy." But for its various inhabitants, the street is to become a boulevard of dreams--some broken, others created anew. Maeve Binchy has long proved herself a secure hand at multiple story lines, and over the course of 500 satisfying pages she focuses on Ria; her best friend, Rosemary Ryan, a beautiful, endlessly selfish career woman; Gertie, the battered wife of a drunkard; and several other intriguing women, each of whom has secrets not to be shared. There is even an all-knowing fortune teller who early on hints that Ria will travel and start a successful business--two things she knows are definitely not in the offing.

Yet after our supposedly happy housewife and mother of two is confronted by some inexorable home truths, a chance phone call from America will change her life, forcing her to discard her illusions about men, women, and marriage and start all over again. At the same time, the Connecticut caller, Marilyn Vine, has her own lessons to learn when she and Ria swap houses for the summer. Yet there's nothing remotely preachy about this novel--even the bad guys (and yes, they're usually guys) and beautiful mistresses get to maintain some appeal. Instead, Tara Road is a stirring look at the reality behind our consuming fantasies, and a page-turner to boot. --Siobhan Carson

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:38 -0400)

(see all 9 descriptions)

Ria lives a charmed life with her adoring husband and two young children. She fills their large Dublin house with the warmth of gourmet cooking and company. But when the charm breaks, and her husband leaves her for a young, pregnant girlfriend, Ria makes an impulsive decision. She switches houses for the summer with an American woman. Soon, Ria finds herself in rural Connecticut, and the American enters Ria's busy Irish neighborhood. As the weeks pass, each woman will uncover secrets that could change the other's life forever.… (more)

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