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Silver Wedding
Cover of Silver Wedding
Silver Wedding
A Novel
Borrow Borrow
There was never any question that Deirdre and Desmond Doyle would celebrate a gala twenty-fifth anniversary. Naturally, their daughter Anna, would plan their grand affair. Of all three Doyle children, Anna knew exactly what their mother wished—even as she lived her own secret life. Will Brendan, the rebellious son, even bother to return to London? Will Helen, the hapless would-be nun, embarrass them all? This is Deirdre’s day, a triumph for a woman obsessed with keeping up appearances, her silvery revenge after “marrying down” twenty-five years ago. She’s determined to show them all: the maid of honor, still unmarried, still gorgeous, now a successful London business woman…the best man, once Desmond’s close friend, now his boss…their reluctant priest, who harbors his own guilty secret.

As family and friends gather, a lifetime of lies takes its toll. But what begins as a family charade brings with it the transforming power of love—and truth.
There was never any question that Deirdre and Desmond Doyle would celebrate a gala twenty-fifth anniversary. Naturally, their daughter Anna, would plan their grand affair. Of all three Doyle children, Anna knew exactly what their mother wished—even as she lived her own secret life. Will Brendan, the rebellious son, even bother to return to London? Will Helen, the hapless would-be nun, embarrass them all? This is Deirdre’s day, a triumph for a woman obsessed with keeping up appearances, her silvery revenge after “marrying down” twenty-five years ago. She’s determined to show them all: the maid of honor, still unmarried, still gorgeous, now a successful London business woman…the best man, once Desmond’s close friend, now his boss…their reluctant priest, who harbors his own guilty secret.

As family and friends gather, a lifetime of lies takes its toll. But what begins as a family charade brings with it the transforming power of love—and truth.
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    1
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  • ATOS:
  • Lexile:
    830
  • Interest Level:
  • Text Difficulty:
    4 - 5

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Excerpts-
  • From the book AnnaAnna knew that he was doing his best to be interested. She could read his face so well. This was the same look she saw on his face when older actors would come up and join them in the club and tell old tales about people long gone. Joe tried to be interested then, too, it was a welcoming, courteous, earnest look. Hoping that it passed as genuine interest, hoping that the conversation wouldn't last too long."I'm sorry, I'm going on a bit," she apologized. She pulled a funny face at him as she sat at the other end of the bed dressed only in one of his shirts, the Sunday papers and a breakfast tray between them.Joe smiled back, a real smile this time."No, it's nice that you're so worked up about it, it's good to care about families."He meant it, she knew, in his heart he thought it was a Good Thing to care about families, like rescuing kittens from trees and beautiful sunsets and big collie dogs. In principle Joe was in favor of caring about families. But he didn't care at all about his own. He wouldn't have known how many years his parents were married. He probably didn't know how long he had been married himself. Something like a silver anniversary would not trouble Joe Ashe.Anna looked at him with the familiar feeling of tenderness and fear. Tender and protective—he looked so lovely lying there against the big pillows, his fair hair falling over his face, his thin brown shoulders so relaxed and easy. Fearful in case she would lose him, in case he would move on gently, effortlessly, out of her life, as he had moved into it.Joe Ashe never fought with people, he told Anna with his big boyish smile, life was much too short for fights. And it was true.When he was passed over for a part, when he got a bad review, there was the shrug: "Well, so it could have been different but let's not make a production out of it."Like his marriage to Janet. It was over, so why go on pretending? He just packed a small bag and left.Anna feared that one day in this very room he would pack a small bag and leave again. She would rail and plead as Janet had done and it would be no use. Janet had even come around and offered Anna money to go away. She wept about how happy she had been with Joe. She showed pictures of the two small sons. It would all be fine again if only Anna would go away."But he didn't leave you to come to me, he had been in a flat by himself for a year before he even met me," Anna had explained."Yes, and all that time I thought he would come back."Anna hated to remember Janet's tearstained face, and how she had made tea for her, and hated even more to think that her own face would be stained with tears like this one day, and as unexpectedly as it had all happened to Janet. She gave a little shiver as she looked at the handsome easy boy in her bed. Because even if he was twenty-eight years of age, he was still a boy. A gentle cruel boy."What are you thinking?" he asked.She didn't tell him. She never told him how much she thought about him and dreaded the day he would leave."I was thinking it's about time they did another film version of Romeo and Juliet. You're so handsome it would be unfair to the world not to get a chance to look at you," she said laughingly.He reached out and put the breakfast tray on the floor. The Sunday papers slid after it."Come here to me," said Joe. "My mind was running on the same lines entirely, entirely at all, "at all' as you Irish say.""What a superb imitation," Anna said dryly, but snuggling up to him all the same. "It's no wonder that you're the best actor in the whole wide world and renowned all over the globe for your great...
About the Author-
  • Maeve Binchy was born in County Dublin and educated at the Holy Child convent in Killiney and at University College, Dublin. After a spell as a teacher she joined The Irish Times. Her first novel, Light a Penny Candle, was published in 1982, and she went on to write more than 20 books, all of them bestsellers. Several have been adapted for film and television, most notably Circle of Friends and Tara Road, which was an Oprah’s Book Club selection. She was married to the writer and broadcaster Gordon Snell for 35 years, and died in 2012 at the age of 72.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    August 1, 1989
    The arrangements for celebrating Desmond and Deirdre Doyle's forthcoming silver wedding anniversary fall to Anna, their eldest daughter, who works in a pretentious London bookshop. Anna proceeds to make a list of guests, most important of whom, besides her parents and herself, are her sister Helen, brother Brendan, and three other participants in the wedding ceremony: the best man, Frank Quigley; Maureen Barry, the maid of honor; and Father Hurley. Each leisurely chapter deals with one of these characters, detailing their lives in the 25 years since the Doyle's marriage. Binchy ( Firefly Summer) exhibits her gift for astute and loving characterization as she examines the way relationships and families work. She engagingly delineates the pressures, both stated and unstated, that repel or attract, the striving for approval from parents and lovers. At the silver wedding celebration, when the obligatory photograph is taken for the family album, the reader knows well what fears and doubts, secrets and achievements lie behind the happy smiles. Readers Digest Condensed Book selection; BOMC featured alternate; major ad/promo.

  • San Francisco Chronicle "A rousing good story.... Laughter and tears: it's what Binchy does best."
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    Random House Publishing Group
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Silver Wedding
A Novel
Maeve Binchy
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