At times stern, at other times patient, at times perceptive, at other times in sad denial, Olive Kitteridge, a retired schoolteacher, deplores the changes in her little town of Crosby, Maine, and in the world at large, but she doesn’t always recognize the changes in those around her: a lounge musician haunted by a past romance; a former student who has lost the will to live; Olive’s own adult child, who feels tyrannized by her irrational sensitivities; and her husband, Henry, who finds his loyalty to his marriage both a blessing and a curse.
As the townspeople grapple with their problems, mild and dire, Olive is brought to a deeper understanding of herself and her life–sometimes painfully, but always with ruthless honesty. Olive Kitteridge offers profound insights into the human condition–its conflicts, its tragedies and joys, and the endurance it requires.
Praise for Olive Kitteridge:
“Perceptive, deeply empathetic . . . Olive is the axis around which these thirteen complex, relentlessly human narratives spin themselves into Elizabeth Strout’s unforgettable novel in stories.”
–O: The Oprah Magazine
“Fiction lovers, remember this name: Olive Kitteridge. . . . You’ll never forget her. . . . [Elizabeth Strout] constructs her stories with rich irony and moments of genuine surprise and intense emotion. . . . Glorious, powerful stuff.”
“Funny, wicked and remorseful, Mrs. Kitteridge is a compelling life force, a red-blooded original. When she’s not onstage, we look forward to her return. Thebook is a page-turner because of her.”
–San Francisco Chronicle
“Olive Kitteridge still lingers in memory like a treasured photograph.”
“Rarely does a story collection pack such a gutsy emotional punch.”
“Strout animates the ordinary with astonishing force. . . . [She] makes us experience not only the terrors of change but also the terrifying hope that change can bring: she plunges us into these churning waters and we come up gasping for air.”
–The New Yorker
2009 Pulitzer Prize in Fiction Winner!
The Washington Post -
There are glimmers of warmth, of human connection, in even the darkest of these stories. Strout's benevolence toward her characters forms a slender bridge between heartbreak and hope, a dimly glimpsed path through minefields of despair. The stifled sorrows she writes of here are as real as our own, and as tenderly, compassionately understood.More Reviews and RecommendationsBiography
Since the publication of Amy and Isabelle, Elizabeth Strout?s bestselling debut novel, seven years have passed. Now that her second novel, Abide with Me, is finally seeing the light of day, her fans are learning that good things are always worth waiting for.More About the Author
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Customer ReviewsReader Rating: Ratings: 16Reviews: 7See All ReviewsI loved this book!by Anonymous
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March 09, 2009:
The characters are interesting and believable. The writing is wonderful. I loved this book and recommended it to friends who have also really liked it. It was the monthly choice at a bookgroup where I was a guest and we had a great discussion about it. Now my bookgroup is reading it and I look forward to participating in another discussion of it.We all know an Olive Kitteridgeby HelenRN
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February 24, 2009:
I loved Olive. I didn't think I would, but she grows on you as her story develops, and you can see beneath the surface. The myriad of other characters in the book seemed real, too, and keep this an entertaining read.
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