Sara Keating on theatre: Binchy’s old favourite runs out of steam in its second half

A new adaptation of Maeve Binchy’s 1990 bestseller Circle of Friends has plenty of nice touches, but flags well before the end

Aisling Kearns, Juliette Crosbie and Roseanna Purcell in Maeve Binchy’s Circle of Friends, adapted by Elaine Murphy and directed by Viko Nikci, at the Gaiety Theatre until May 14. Picture: Ste Murray

Circle of Friends, by Maeve Binchy; adapted by Elaine Murphy; directed by Viko Nikci

Gaiety Theatre, Dublin; runs until until May 14

As we await the release of the TV adaptation of Sally Rooney’s debut novel Conversations With Friends, it is worth considering why her work has appealed so strongly to a female readership in particular.

The complex portrayal of female friendship, the unsentimental exploration of female sexuality, the artfully studied demotic style: these are ...