Olive Kitteridge is structured like loosely connected short stories about the townspeople in Maine. While most of the stories are in Olive's point of view, there are also quite a few that are from other townspeople with Olive featuring either as a cameo or as a motif.
The book spans 25 years of Olive's life and while the argument could be made that Olive and her life are quite ordinary on the one hand: she is a school teacher, gets married, has a child, etc, her life and Olive herself are also extraordinary. She is a woman who isn't afraid to wear her heart on her sleeve, who feels extraordinary passion, and who is a keen observer of life, including her own.
My all time favourite last line is from this book. "It baffled her, the world. She did not want to leave it yet."