The Copper Beech, Paperback Book
5 out of 5 (1 rating)


An old copper beech overlooks a school, and witnesses all the hopes and loves, dreams and ambitions of the children who grew up there...By the school house at Shancarrig stands a copper beech, its bark scarred with the names and dreams of the pupils who have grown up under its branches.

Under Junior Assistant Mistress Maddy Ross's careful gaze the children play, but out of school Maddy's gaze lingers where it shouldn't.

Maura Brennan, a bundle of fun from the rough end of town, plays with her pals: leap year baby Eddie Barton, the apple of his mother's eye, and Nessa Ryan, who little realises as she carves his name at the roots of the copper beech on the very last day of school that she'll get a lot more from one of her schoolmates than her first shy kiss.The copper beech is the gateway to Maeve Binchy's marvellous portrait of a small Irish town whose untroubled surface conceals the passions, rivalries, friendships, ambitions and jealousies beneath.


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This was a magnificent book written in a simple, yet evocative language. The way everyone's lives are interconnected is demonstrated in this serious of touching stories about life in a small Irish town. The thread that knits the sttories together is the old Copper Beech tree at Shancarrig school where students carve their names.As we read each character's story, the life of the town emerges into our conciousness. This book shows that every place, no matter how drab, has a story and that we can never know what is happening in the life of another.I was touched to the quick by this story and had trouble putting it down. A tale that will remain in my memory forever.I would recommend this book to anyone....

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