Our November Selection: Olive, Again

Olive, Again is the follow-up to Strout’s 2009 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel Olive Kitteridge. If you haven’t read it, no dramas - this book stands completely on its own. If you have read it, well all the more joy for you; it’s an excellent book and the only one Laura has ever read thrice! 

Olive, Again is a novel made up of stories that are connected by the stubborn, formidable, often rude, always judgemental, but sometimes very tender and deeply empathetic Olive Kitteridge. Through the character of Olive, Strout can make us laugh and sob within the space of a paragraph. She is a master at extracting the emotional truths of ordinary lives and revealing vulnerability in her characters. Filled with humanity and luminous detail, Strout can get to the core of a person with a simplicity that astounds you. Her writing has that wonderful effect of making the reader connect with their own stories and to find the nuance and complexity and beauty that make up their lives. In Olive’s words: “What a thing!”

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