Kate and John Ryan, of Ryan’s Licensed Premises have four children, of which the eldest are Michael and Dara, twelve-year-old twins. The small town in which these children are growing up is peaceful and friendly, an unchanging background for a golden childhood and adolescence, where in long hot summers Dara and Michael Ryan and their friends can fish and swim in the river that winds its slow way through the town, or picnic and play in the ivy-clad ruins of Fernscourt, the great house burned down during the Troubles.
No one in Mountfern, except possibly the lawyer Fergus Slattery, and later Kate Ryan herself, has the slightest inkling of what it will mean for their lives when the ruins are bought by an Irish American with a dream in his heart and a great deal of money in his pocket.
Reviews of Firefly Summer
“Maeve Binchy has a gimlet eye for the seething cauldron of emotions which lies beneath the surface of everyday life.” — Irish Independent
“An adept storyteller with a sharp eye for social nuances and a pleasing affection for her characters.” — Sunday Times
“The secrets hidden behind lace curtains, a young girl’s first kiss, children’s summer games, unexpected pregnancies, sudden deaths. She makes us feel as if we also know the place and the people… One of those good old-fashioned stories that are as comfortable and comforting as home itself.” — The Philadelphia Inquirer