October 2009 Indie Next List
“The book discussion we had about Elizabeth Strout's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel about Olive Kitteridge, a retired schoolteacher in a little town in Maine, was one of the best we ever had. The reading group members were incredibly passionate about their love of the book and their love (and hatred) of Olive. We laughed and cried, and one member called us afterward and asked what we were going to read to get us that riled up again!”
— Deb McDonald, Garden District Book Shop, New Orleans, LA
WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE - THE EMMY AWARD-WINNING HBO MINISERIES STARRING FRANCES MCDORMAND, RICHARD JENKINS, AND BILL MURRAY
In a voice more powerful and compassionate than ever before, New York Times bestselling author Elizabeth Strout binds together thirteen rich, luminous narratives into a book with the heft of a novel, through the presence of one larger-than-life, unforgettable character: Olive Kitteridge.
At the edge of the continent, Crosby, Maine, may seem like nowhere, but seen through this brilliant writer's eyes, it's in essence the whole world, and the lives that are lived there are filled with all of the grand human drama-desire, despair, jealousy, hope, and love.
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 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 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.
NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR BY
People - USA Today - The Atlantic - The Washington Post Book World - Seattle Post-Intelligencer - Entertainment Weekly - The Christian Science Monitor - San Francisco Chronicle - Salon - San Antonio Express-News - Chicago Tribune - The Wall Street Journal
-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.---USA Today
-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. The book is a page-turner because of her.---San Francisco Chronicle
-Olive Kitteridge still lingers in memory like a treasured photograph.---Seattle Post-Intelligencer
-Rarely does a story collection pack such a gutsy emotional punch.---Entertainment Weekly
-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
From the Hardcover edition.
About the Author
Elizabeth Strout is the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Olive Kitteridge, as well as The Burgess Boys, a New York Times bestseller; Abide with Me, a national bestseller; and Amy and Isabelle, which won the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction and the Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize. She has also been a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award and the Orange Prize in England. Her short stories have been published in a number of magazines, including The New Yorker and O: The Oprah Magazine. Elizabeth Strout lives in New York City. From the Hardcover edition.
NAMED A BEST BOOK OF 2008 BY:
The Washington Post Book World
The Christian Science Monitor
San Francisco Chronicle
San Antonio Express-News
The Wall Street Journal