Thursday, August 20, 2009
Review: Olive Kitteredge
What a character- Olive Kitteredge is loud, bossy, and decisive. In her old age she swears and complains. Strong-headed, but with her own sort of compassion, Oliver is an institution in her small Maine town. This novel, told in a series of stories, details the lives of Olive, her family, and those around her in Crosby, Maine. The great strength in this book is in its central character. I've never seen another character quite like Olive. From the blurb on the back I was expecting a sort of stock, cantankerous old lady, but that's not Olive. It's hard not to love and loathe Olive at the same time. Through this book we see how the exigencies of life can chip away at as solid a vessel as Olive Kitteredge, and that's both disturbing and reassuring at the same time.
Elizabeth Strout, Olive Kitteredge, (Random House, 2008) ISBN: 0812971833