From my list on exploring how place shapes community.
Who am I?
I’m a writer who grew up in Massachusetts and now lives in Austin, Texas. Though I haven’t lived in Massachusetts for over a decade now, I find myself drawn back to the state’s coast in my fiction. My novel, Women and Children First, takes place in a fictional town south of Boston called Nashquitten. I’m obsessed with how where we’re from shapes who we become and the ways we use narrative to try and exert control over our lives.
Alina's book list on exploring how place shapes community
Why did Alina love this book?
Elizabeth Strout is a master of character, and this cycle of linked stories, which takes place in the coastal town of Crosby, Maine, is no exception; following the eponymous Olive over several years, she appears as a major character in some stories, and a minor one in others.
I grew up in a small town beside the ocean, and Strout’s descriptive powers transported me to the salinated air and buoy-knocked waters of my youth.
But it’s her observations about human nature, filtered through the town’s tight-knit community, that makes the book so powerful. She examines questions that haunt us all: How do we take care of those around us—especially those who don’t want our help? What does it mean to be a caring partner, a good friend? How do we find grace and joy in a world where no one goes untouched by tragedy?