Olive Kitteridge (2008) - Elizabeth Strout

by HRevvdon@evpl on Thursday, January 29 2009, 1:17pm. Viewed 663 times.

Olive Kitteridge (2008) by Elizabeth Strout is a string of short stories all of which either feature Olive, or in which Olive is either a major or a minor part of.  At times I thought Olive irritating and just a plain nasty old biddy.  At other times I thought she was basically a good person just doing the best she can.

There are thirteen stories, with linked characters and themes.  It is a unique story-telling form that I enjoyed.  Set in a small town in coastal Maine, the character studies are wonderful especially Olive and Henry Kitteridge.  I really liked Henry for his quiet intelligence and kindness, and that he loved Olive despite her faults.  Olive is a character that will suddenly drop a pearl of wisdom.  The stories are sometimes funny, other times they would wrench your heart.

I was pleasantly surprised how much I enjoyed reading the stories, and enjoyed the thread of continuity of Olive's appearing.  Really, I guess I was waiting to see how Strout would introduce her to a story that did not have any direct relationship to her.  I would recommend this book.


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