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Olive, Again: From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Olive Kitteridge Paperback – 3 November 2020

4.5 out of 5 stars 8,341 ratings

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From the Publisher

Product description

Review

A novel to treasure... Olive, Again, like Strout's first book, delivers roughly five hours of spine-tingling pleasure. ― Sunday Times

Olive, Again is a tour de force. With extraordinary economy of prose - few writers can pack so much emotion, so much emotion, so much detail into a single paragraph - Strout immerses us in the lives of her characters, each so authentically drawn as to be deserving of an entire novel themselves. Compassionate, masterly and profound, this is a writer at the height of her powers ― Observer

Emotionally honest, psychologically piercing and ultimately life-affirming ―
The i

Her writing is exquisite; her vision is boundless. What a sublime book.

A superbly gifted storyteller and a craftswoman in a league of her own. In
Olive, Again, she teaches us that there is always more to know about human beings, even the ones we are closest to.

There's no simple truth about human existence, Strout reminds us, only wonderful, painful complexity. 'Well, that's life,' Olive says. 'Nothing you can do about it.' Beautifully written and alive with compassion, at times almost unbearably poignant. A thrilling book in every way. ―
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

Strout again demonstrates her gift for zeroing in on ordinary moments in the lives of ordinary people to highlight their extraordinary resilience ―
Publishers Weekly, starred review

She gets better with each book

Glorious ―
The Times

A perfect novel ―
Financial Times

In Olive Kitteridge, Strout has created one of those rare characters...so vivid and humorous they seems to take on a life independent of the story framing them ―
Guardian

Elizabeth Strout is... one of the undisputed heavyweights of generous, clear-eyed domestic realism ―
Daily Mail

A special, precious book...full of hope and humanity ―
Red

Funny, sad, tender and truthful, this is pure joy ―
Stylist

A terrific writer -- Zadie Smith

Book Description

The latest masterpiece from the Pulitzer Prize-winning, Number One New York Times bestselling author of Olive Kitteridge, now in paperback

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Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Penguin (General UK); 1st edition (3 November 2020)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Paperback ‏ : ‎ 304 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0241985544
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0241985540
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 12.9 x 1.8 x 19.8 cm
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.5 out of 5 stars 8,341 ratings

About the author

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Elizabeth Strout is the author of the New York Times bestseller Olive Kitteridge, for which she was awarded the Pulitzer Prize; the national bestseller Abide with Me; and Amy and Isabelle, winner of the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum Award and the Chicago Tribune Heartland Prize. She has also been a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award and the Orange Prize in London. She lives in Maine and New York City.

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4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top reviews from other countries

Sabina
5.0 out of 5 stars O Live Again?
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 19 November 2019
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35 people found this helpful
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Titania78
5.0 out of 5 stars An extraordinary achievement....
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 24 November 2019
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17 people found this helpful
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bookyfemale
5.0 out of 5 stars A master class in ageing and human nature
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 3 February 2020
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TripFiction
4.0 out of 5 stars Novel set in MAINE
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 19 January 2020
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TripFiction
4.0 out of 5 stars Novel set in MAINE
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 19 January 2020
The name of the fictional town of Crosby is a tribute to the author’s room mate in college, Ellen Crosby. The first “Olive” novel was simply titled “Olive Kitteridge” and is described as a ‘novel in stories‘. Olive, Again is in similar format. Olive, the eponymous lady of the title, is the leitmotif throughout the book, some chapters are dedicated to her post retirement life, sharing snippets and insights as she deals with the ageing process. Other stories are about the people in the small town and Olive will make a cameo appearance. She has some connection to all the characters featured and it is a little like picking up a magnifying glass, and with the aid of the deft hand of the author, the inner workings of the characters and lives are prised open like a nut for the reader to appreciate.

This is not a linear story per se, it is just beautiful writing and storytelling. Olive almost seems to be on the autism spectrum because at times her interactions can be quite curt, she says what she thinks without really giving thought to how her words are received. She really struggles to filter her thoughts before she voices her opinion. Yet, she can also be reflective and can try so hard. She tries to re-connect with her son, who comes to stay with her for a few days, yet she doesn’t know really how to dive in and mend the fractured relationship. When she discovers, left behind, a small garment she had knitted for one her grandchildren she feels ‘terror’. She corrects how others speak. She is just who she is, plucky and direct and that rare fictional character, yes, an older woman! Love her or hate her, she is a memorable character. There is quiet humour, too and it is at times quite moving.

What really makes this novel work is the beautiful and stylish writing. Emotions are created with select, pertinent words brought together in a creative and fluid way. The author’s prose is just wonderful.
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6 people found this helpful
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Susan
3.0 out of 5 stars Very depressing
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 4 March 2020
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