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Summary

As a child, Elizabeth was sent from her war-torn, rather loveless home in London to stay with a big, boisterous family in a small town in Ireland. There she meets Aisling, and begins what becomes a long-lasting friendship.

Over the next 20 years, Aisling and Elizabeth's paths will cross and re-cross. As they face their loves, their marriages, and their disappointments, they realise that not all problems will be solved, nor all wishes granted by lighting a penny candle.

©1982 Maeve Binchy (P)2000 Audible Ltd

What listeners say about Light a Penny Candle

Average customer ratings
Overall
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Light a penny Candle

Wonderfully read with Kate Binchy bring the story to life. At times you feel like you are in the changing world of Elizabeth and Ashlenna. Elizabeth and Ashlenna friendship helps them through the trails of love, hate, saddness, happiness, marriage and breaks ups.
The story shows how two young girls who are brought together because of the war grow into strong women, cope with the beliefs and expectations of their parents, and learn how to live their lives in a world that is changing.

13 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A wonderful heartwarming, life affirming book

This was, I believe the first of Maeve Binchy's books I read it many years ago and decided, on a whim, to download it as an audible book. I am so glad that I did so, Kate Binchy's gentle and loving narration does great justice to the book and is a joy to have spoken in your ears.



The story is about an enduring friendship between two women but it is also about life with its love, joys and disappointments and moments of real anguish. Maeve Binchy had the art and craft of the storyteller and her deceptively simple prose will carry you into the boisterous and loving arms of the O'Connor and then away again to the stifling constraints of life with Elizabeth's Father. It made me laugh and cry and want it not to end and I cannot think that there are many people who would not find their life enriched with an encounter with Maeve Binchy's folk and this is a good place to start. Although it is easy to 'read' it is not an easy read - a book with no depth, it deals with real issues but in a loving non judgemental way, perhaps it is not too much to say that it makes you feel a better person to have spent time with the characters in the book.

10 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Great Start...Disappointing Ending

What did you like best about Light a Penny Candle? What did you like least?

Narration was top of class, great character development. Rushed and out of character for the characters ending.

If you’ve listened to books by Maeve Binchy before, how does this one compare?

I've listened to Firefly Summer & Circle of Friends both had more rounded characters and a more believable plot/ ending.

What does Kate Binchy bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

She really does understand the characters, every book she narrates she takes me to Ireland and back, her accents and interpretations of the characters are spot on.

If this book were a film would you go see it?

Possibly but they'd need to change the ending!

Any additional comments?

If you haven't read Binchey before I wouldn't necessarily start with this one, Circle of Friends is a better starting point. To be honest I think 3 stars is a bit mean- if I could I would have given 3.5 but 4 stars is just a step too far.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Mr
  • 23-12-12

light a penny candle

This is a well written book which was brilliantly brought to life by the narrator. The intertwined lives of the characters superbly developed and it kept me gripped to the end. Being narrated meant a companion on dog walks, whatever the weather.

Looking forward to listening to more from the same author.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

So sad but absolutely gripping.

I have become totally addicted to listening to my Maeve Binchy audiobooks.They are amazing and bring hours of total enjoyment.Really wonderful reading as well.By the end of this book the characters had come to life and I was feeling all their joy and sadness as if they were friends.What a gifted author she was.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars

Very good but not her best

I love Maeve Binchy. She is a fabulous writer. I enjoyed this book but it is not her best work. It is a very long book with lots of detailed information about all the characters as usual but it ends too quickly for me with many questions unanswered !! If there are other Maeve books you haven't read, read those first and come to this one last. If you a new reader then definately don't listen to this one first !! I still enjoyed it though but please bear my comments in mind. Merry Christmas !! x

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Awesome!

Have listened to many audiobooks and have listened to several by Maeve Binchy, find her books so well written and her ability to make her character come alive is second to none! However this book is something else, the relationship between the two main characters was so cleverly intertwined and I found myself looking forward for the next opportunity I had to listen to just a little bit more of the story. I listen to my audio books in the car and one evening found myself sat in the driveway as I didn't want to get out of the car until I found out just what happened next! Fantastic book! x

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Something wrong ?

I throughly enjoyed this book. Only three stars, so why. I tried to contact Audible or Amazon. But never made contacted. I am certain the narrator must have missed a good part near the end. All of a sudden there was a death. An enquiry then it ended very abruptly. Did any one else find this . I have returned it and hope for an explanation from Audible. But I won’t hold my breath. 😢

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

excellent

This is a wonderful story, beautifully told and performed. I would definitely recommend this book.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Needs a Different Narrator

Lovely story marred by the narration. Her male voices were oddly harsh and, in some places, downright creepy. I stuck with it because I loved the characters but the narration made it hard going.