Quentins is a 2002 novel by Irish author Maeve Binchy.

Plot introduction

Ella Brady, a young science teacher, falls in love with a successful businessman (Don Richardson) who's married but tells her that his marriage was "dead". For a few time she's happy with the torrid affair, and manages to overlook a few inconsistencies in what he tells her. Until the moment when he's exposed as a corrupt swindler and runs away out of the country and out of her life - leaving Ella, her family, and a large number of people in Dublin without their savings. Ella is disgraced and quits her teaching job to work more than 60 hours a week at Quentins restaurant, with the Scarlet Feather catering company, and with a film crew, to help out her family.

The book mostly concentrates on Ella's attempt to get funding for her friends' film company for a documentary about the restaurant Quentins. She struggles to get over a man who was deceitful, whom she still loves, and with whether or not to give the fraud squad access to a laptop he left in her possession. Eventually, her efforts to get funding get her to meet a new man, Derry King, an American businessman with an Irish heritage which he hates because of the way his drunken Irish father treated him and his mother.

Smaller plot points revolve around the background of Patrick and Brenda Brennan (the owners of Quentins), Ella's girlfriends Deirdre and Nuala, and a large number of of the regulars at the restaurant; the main plot is interspersed with various vignettes in the life of people who had been in contact with the restaurant in one way or another, these inteweaving with each additional and with Ella Brady's life in a various unpredicatable ways.

Major themes

The novel explores themes of love, family, loyalty, and the benefits of hard and honest work.

Recurring characters