I just finished Olive Kitteredge by Elizabeth Strout (thanks to maggie b. for giving me this gem). I still feel a little choked up after reading this book.
There are books that transport you to a different time or place, I love those. There are books that teach you how to do/make useful and /or beautiful things, I love those too.
There are books that beautifully celebrate the quotidien. Life can feel small sometimes. We spend so much time cleaning crumbs off a table, coercing our children to getting into the bath, thinking of what we need to buy at the grocery store, waiting for the next, better thing. And so I love to read a book that reminds me how beautiful it is to sweep crumbs off a table. And I love to read a book that reminds me of the beauty of everyone and the everyday. Because we all need those reminders, almost constantly. At least I do.
And I should say, that while this book reminded me of the importance and beauty of the everyday, it did so in a completely unsentimental, non-precious sort of way.
The characters in this book are living, breathing people, and that is another piece that make this book such a good read.
It's also so New England, and being a New Englander, I love that.
And now to deal with a 7yr. old's bloody nose, teeth brushing and bedtime...