- Tuesday, 31 July 2012
The best-selling author was best known for her heart-warming stories of living and loving in her home of Ireland.
She has sold more than 40 million books worldwide which have been translated into 30 languages, despite the fact her first book was rejected five times by publishers at the start of her writing career.
Some of her work has also been adapted to screen, including the 1995 film Circle of Friends, starring Minnie Driver and Chris O'Connell.
Binchy first became a writer when her parents sent her letters from abroad to a local paper. She initially worked as a teacher, then went on to become a journalist, columnist and women's editor at the Irish Times as well as a best-selling novelist.
Her first novel, Light a Penny Candle, was published in 1982. Following this she then went on to publish many more novels and short story collections including those about Dublin and London that featured sharp, funny and poignant observations of residents of those cities.
Although retiring in 2000, Maeve continued writing and her final novel, Minding Frankie, was published in 2010. In the same year she was presented a lifetime achievement award from the Irish Book Awards.
On news of her death early this morning, Maeve was trending on Twitter as friends and fans paid tribute to the much loved author.
Mystery author Harlan Coben tweeted: 'I'm so sad to hear about the death of wonderful, funny, talented, generous, endearing Maeve Binchy'
And crime writer Ian Rankin tweeted: 'Maeve Binchy was a gregarious, larger than life, ebullient recorder of human foibles and wonderment. I'm taking a drink to her'
As well as fan Lorraine Kelly who said: 'So sad to hear of death of Maeve Binchy - brilliant storyteller who wrote from her heart'.
Her husband, writer Gordon Snell, lives on and remains in their Dublin home.
By Sarah Yeoman