Next Up: ‘Olive Kitteridge’

Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout

  • Date began: Oct. 15, 2011
  • Genre: Fiction
  • Project: n/a
  • Reading List: Fall 2011, Pulitzer Prize winners
  • Got it: Another $1 find at the Baldwin Public Library book sale
  • Why I picked it up: I’m a hound for Pulitzer winners and this was a relatively recent winner. Not to mention, the book was in fantastic shape for a used book sale and so, really, how do you pass that up?
  • Back of the book: At times stern, at other time patient, at times perceptive, at other times in sad denial, Olive Kitteridge, a retired schoolteacher, deplores the changes in her little down 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 a a curse.As 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.

Note: Copying down that blurb from the back of the book made me realize that the first paragraph is entirely one sentence and has nine commas, one colon and three semi-colons. I think someone needs to stop reading Faulkner and take a lesson in proper sentence construction. Yikes.

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