It is not a novel. Essentially thirteen short-stories with ‘Olive Kitteridge‘ playing some role, major in some, fleeting in others, in each story. Beautifully crafted. The story and characters engage you. Draw you in. You want to know what happens to them.
All the stories are set in a fictional coast town in Downeast Maine. My wife of 16-years is from coastal Maine (albeit slightly further North). Over the last year six years I have been spending a fair amount of time in Maine — mainly in Acadia. So, the landscape and the nuances of the characters were familiar.
I found it interesting and absorbing — though typically I am not a huge fan of short-stories. The portrayal of the Mainers amused I. An overriding theme is their lecherousness and promiscuity — irrespective of age. Hmmm. I won’t comment on that.
Yes, as with the ‘Secret Lives of Bees‘ this book is hugely well known and has a huge following. I am, as ever, late to the party.
Don’t make fun of me for recommending a book that was published in 2003. Sorry. I very rarely read a book as soon as it is published — ‘The Da Vinci Code’ the one exception I can remember.
We appeared to have picked up a copy of this alluring book at our local ‘Swap Shop‘ where you can invariably find a good book or two. I think it had been languishing around the house for some time. Having read ‘Hawaii‘, ‘Miracle in Seville‘, ‘The Covenant‘ & ‘ Tales of the South Pacific‘ within the space of 10-months I needed a break from Michener. I saw the book, liked the title and started reading it.
Yes, of course, millions have obviously raved about this book ahead of I. The cover itself has the splash banner that says ‘A New York Times Bestseller‘.
To I it was a less intense version of “To Kill A Mockingbird“! Set slightly later in the South but a story that revolves around the racial inequality and tension of pre-Civil Rights USA. Very cleverly done. Kind of disappointing to learn that it is all fiction. It definitely feels very real.
You want to know what happens next. As such it is quite the page turner. Yes, there is some ‘fluff’, but that is ‘OK’. I assume it was meant primarily for a female audience. That bothers me none. I enjoyed it. I have some familiarity of Black Madonna worship around the world. So, I enjoyed that aspect.
They have made a movie of the book. I watched the trailer. Hhmm. Some actresses from “Hidden Figures” a movie that I have already watched twice. But, from the little I saw, it didn’t seem to jive with the book. So, I am not going to rush into watching it.
Highly recommended. If you haven’t read it, do yourself a favor and read it.