The worlds of arts, politics and journalism have led tributes to Irish novelist Maeve Binchy, who has died at the age of 72.
Irish President Michael D Higgins and Taoiseach Enda Kenny lamented the passing of a national treasure, while literary colleagues and friends from the world of print and broadcasting remembered a warm and generous friend.
The former journalist and best-selling author died peacefully in hospital yesterday with her husband, children’s writer Gordon Snell, by her side.
Binchy wrote 16 novels and sold more than 40 million books worldwide during her career.
Mr Kenny offered her family his deepest sympathies, on behalf of the Government and the Irish people, who he said had lost a national treasure.
“Across Ireland and the world people are mourning and celebrating Maeve Binchy,” he said.
“She is a huge loss wherever stories of love, hope, generosity and possibility are read and cherished.
“We are thankful for and proud of the writer and the woman Maeve Binchy.”