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Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
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Olive Kitteridge (2008)

by Elizabeth Strout

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
6,124456668 (3.92)365
  1. 61
    Gilead by Marilynne Robinson (2810michael)
  2. 50
    Winesburg, Ohio by Sherwood Anderson (gust, ainsleytewce)
    gust: Ook een verhalenbundel met terugkerende personages in de verschillende verhalen
  3. 51
    The Other Hand by Chris Cleave (sarah-e)
  4. 30
    Unaccustomed Earth by Jhumpa Lahiri (chrisharpe)
  5. 52
    Empire Falls by Richard Russo (2810michael)
  6. 10
    The Edge of Darkness by Mary Ellen Chase (CurrerBell)
    CurrerBell: Maine regionalism can often be at its best when written as a collection of short stories, character studies, or vignettes all united around a single character, as in the case of Elizabeth Strout's Olive Kitteridge, Mary Ellen Chase's The Edge of Darkness, and Sarah Orne Jewett's The Country of the Pointed Firs.… (more)
  7. 10
    Lives of Girls and Women by Alice Munro (ainsleytewce)
  8. 10
    A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman (_debbie_)
  9. 10
    Our Town by Thornton Wilder (ainsleytewce)
  10. 10
    Spoon River Anthology by Edgar Lee Masters (ainsleytewce)
  11. 10
    Moral Disorder and Other Stories by Margaret Atwood (RidgewayGirl)
    RidgewayGirl: Both tell the life story of a woman in short story form, with compassion and an unflinching eye.
  12. 10
    Tunu by Kim Leine (2810michael)
    2810michael: Mest pga opbygningen med novelleagtige kapitler, der portrætterer en by og dens personer
  13. 10
    The Sweet Hereafter by Russell Banks (jbvm)
  14. 10
    Cool Water by Dianne Warren (lkernagh, mymia)
  15. 10
    The Way to the Cats by Yehoshua Kenaz (SqueakyChu)
    SqueakyChu: another crotchety old woman - about whom it's fun to read
  16. 00
    Honeydew by Edith Pearlman (akblanchard)
    akblanchard: Short stories set in small-town New England
  17. 00
    The Man of My Dreams by Curtis Sittenfeld (thelittlematchgirl)
    thelittlematchgirl: both are stories about women some people will find unlikeable and some will want to be friends with.
  18. 00
    The Civilized World by Susi Wyss (ShortStoryLover)
    ShortStoryLover: While the settings in these books are very different, both are collections of linked stories in which the main characters are revealed through a kind of multi-faceted prism, as the reader experiences them not just through the main characters' points view but also through the points of view of the other characters.… (more)
  19. 00
    The Evening Star by Larry McMurtry (Ciruelo)
    Ciruelo: A strong willed and contrary woman is the foundation of each book.
  20. 23
    Runaway by Alice Munro (gust)

(see all 20 recommendations)

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» See also 365 mentions

English (451)  Catalan (2)  Danish (1)  Spanish (1)  Italian (1)  German (1)  All languages (457)
Showing 1-5 of 451 (next | show all)
I loved the characters in this book. I could associate a lot of the characters in the book with characters in my own life. So much of the book rang true. I think a lot of people who live in small towns will identify with this book. ( )
  Koren56 | Feb 4, 2016 |
A set of linked short stories. I liked it very much (5 stars worths). A story of a aging and family set in Maine. Pulitzer. ( )
  Kristelh | Jan 31, 2016 |
Liked the writing very well, did not like the title character, which made it a difficult read. ( )
  dtempleton | Jan 24, 2016 |
Read "The Burgess Boys" a while back and liked it. But whenever I mentioned that book, people kept telling me "you have GOT to read Olive Kitteridge." Now I know why. This one is--as they say--on a whole other level. A series of interconnected stories that flesh out the complex title character, they also introduce us to a host of other characters, situations, and family/community dynamics. I thought of the study I read about recently that showed reading literary fiction increases the reader's capacity for empathy. There couldn't be a better example than this book. Olive may not be a character one could immediately (or maybe ever) warm up to in real life, but under Strout's expert hand, the readers comes to understand something about her and to care about her...and, in turn, to reflect on one's own life and relationships. ( )
  bibleblaster | Jan 23, 2016 |
Wonderful writer - in the style of Elizabeth Berg and Anne Tyler, but a little deeper. I simply love this author. Stories are sad, writing is witty and truthful. I was so taken with the character of Olive Kitterage. ( )
  Judy_Ryfinski | Jan 20, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 451 (next | show all)
Each of the 13 tales serves as an individual microcosm of small-town life, with its gossip, small kindnesses, and everyday tragedies. Not all the minor characters stand out the way Henry and Olive do, and there are a pile of them to keep straight by the end. I also couldn’t quite place how one story, “Ship in a Bottle,” meshed with the rest. But those are small flaws far outweighed by the book’s compassion and intelligence.
 
The pleasure in reading “Olive Kitteridge” comes from an intense identification with complicated, not always admirable, characters. And there are moments in which slipping into a character’s viewpoint seems to involve the revelation of an emotion more powerful and interesting than simple fellow feeling—a complex, sometimes dark, sometimes life-sustaining dependency on others.
 

» Add other authors (9 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Elizabeth Stroutprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Burr, SandraNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Dedication
For my mother who can make life magical and is the best storyteller I know.
First words
For many years Henry Kitteridge was a pharmacist in the next town over, driving every morning on snowy roads, or rainy roads, or summertime roads, when the wild raspberries shot their new growth in brambles along the last section of town before he turned off to where the wider road led to the pharmacy.
Quotations
Olive had sat in her bedroom and wept like a baby, not so much for this country but for the city itself, which had seemed to her to become suddenly no longer a foreign, hardened place, but as fragile as a class of kindergarten children, brave in their terror.
She showed him the library built the year before Henry's stroke, with its cathedral ceilng and skylights. He looked at the books, and she wanted to say, "Stop that," as though he were reading her diary.
Who, who, does not have their basket of trips.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (3)

Book description
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 into a deeper understanding of herself and her life - sometimes painfully, but always with ruthless honesty.

Stories:
Pharmacy
Incoming Tide
The Piano Player
A Little Burst
Starving
A Different Road
Winter Concert
Tulips
Basket of Trips
Ship in a Bottle
Security
Criminal
River
Haiku summary

No descriptions found.

At the edge of the continent, in the small town of Crosby, Maine, lives Olive Kitteridge, a retired schoolteacher who deplores the changes in her town and in the world at large but doesn't always recognize the changes in those around her.

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