Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Olive, Again; Elizabeth Strout


TITLE: Olive, Again
AUTHOR:  Elizabeth Strout
PUBLISHER: 
PUB. YEAR: 2020
SETTING: Maine
FORMAT: library/audio
RATING: - 5/5


The sequel to Olive Kitteridge (2008), the prickly Olive is back in her charming town of Crosby, Maine.  A retired math teacher, now in her lates seventies to early eighties (she ages a decade in this offering), her husband Henry has passed away and, despite her tough exterior, she's lonely and misses having that human connection.  

Like the original book, Olive's story is told through a series of (13) somewhat connected stories involving some of the same characters and some new ones as well. We learn more about her strained relationship with her son and his new family, as well as details about Jack Kennison, a Harvard Alum and new husband to Olive. 

I loved traveling along side with Olive through her senior years as she reflects on her life. It's easy to see that beyond Olive's matter-of-fact, blunt style, she a woman with a big heart who faces  the same vulnerabilities as other seniors as she ages.  She's softened a bit and perhaps a little more tolerant as well, but, by the end, it's pretty clear that Olive is just a woman who is just looking for peace and contentment in the time she has left on earth.

Beautifully written, I found Olive, Again, to be an emotionally moving read. The author does an amazing job forcing the reader to think about the emptiness factor seniors can experience as one ages and the importance of that human connection. The audio was expertly done.

22 comments:

  1. It's really wonderful when you find one you enjoy so much!

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  2. I plan on reading this but have to read book #1 first.

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  3. I'm so glad you enjoyed this book as much as I did. I do love the Olive character.

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  4. I'm eager to read this, but can't decide whether to go with the print or audio edition. I love Olive's no-nonsense attitude, but I agree that she does have a big heart beneath all that feistiness.

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  5. I'm really happy to see that you enjoyed this one so much. I'm finally number two on the hold list at my library, so I should be getting a chance to read it sometime in the next week or so. I'm looking forward to it.

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  6. After reading your review I want to read this book, and will read the first one before this one. Feisty older lady with a big heart, sounds great.

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  7. I haven't read either book.. I keep lumping them in with the Ove book which was okay. I know they have nothing to do with one another. I think maybe they came out at the same time or something. I just never picked them up. Should I?

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    1. I really think these (2) books will resonate more with older readers but, that being said, I know many younger readers have loved them as well.

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  8. Do you think it's necessary to read Olive Kitteridge to enjoy this one?

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    1. I would definitely read Olive K first. The audios are very well done in case you prefer listening.

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  9. I will be looking out for this one. Thanks for the review.

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  10. I enjoyed the first Olive book even though Olive drove me crazy! I'll have to check this out.

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  11. I'm not sure why it's taking me so long to find time for this book - I loved Olive Kitteridge! Glad this one is another winner.

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  12. I loved the first Olive book so I'm definitely looking forward to this one. So glad it was a five star read for you!

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  13. So glad you liked this one -- I have a copy and plan to read it soon. Strout is wonderful to read. I've liked a few of hers ... including Olive Kitteridge.

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