NPR did a round-up of recent fiction about solitude. I selected one to read because of this line, about a widow:
Celia Cassill is a young widow who has retreated from the world in the wake of her husband’s death. She rents out three apartments in her building, but other than collecting payment and addressing tenant complaints, she keeps to herself. “American life asks us to engage in an act of triumphant recovery at all times,” she says, which is her own way of saying she’s divorced herself from such social expectation.