Reviews

Ducks, Newburyport by Lucy Ellmann

drews1's review against another edition

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5.0

There are already a lot of really fantastic reviews so I'll just say that it definitely lived up the hype. Structurally very interesting and much more emotionally poignant that I expected.

fionagdonnelly's review against another edition

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5.0

i think i know this woman now more than i know myself

bexlrose's review against another edition

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1.0

FINALLY finished reading Ducks, Newburyport by Lucy Ellmann. Buckle up because I haven't been this angry about a book in a long while. It was over 1000 pages of pure stream-of-consciousness. 1000 PAGES. Fuck you Ellmann, I want my life back. At 200 pages I'd have given it 4 stars, I thought it was fab at that point, after another 100 pages I was beginning to think it was toss, after another 200 pages I felt like I was embarking upon an act of self flagellation. I put it down after 500 pages and didn't pick it up again for 6 months because, ya know, good books are out there. I thought I'd better finish it because otherwise I wouldn't be able to write this seething review and tell you all how awful it is. Not gonna lie, I skim-read the last 500 pages and I'M NOT EVEN SORRY. Here is my full review in 3 words:
Utter pretentious wank.

Ellmann thinks she's shit-hot, and I'm sure she's a complete genius, I mean you'd really have to be to write this book (that or demented) but just because you CAN write a 1000 page novel about someone's day that starts every new thought with the words 'the fact that' DOESN'T MEAN YOU SHOULD. I hear the author was condescending about crime fiction in an interview too which just filled me with rage considering how if any police officers read her book she could legitimately be charged with wasting police time.

1.5 stars (she made a few good points and there was a metaphor about a lioness running throughout which, whilst in itself was deeply boring, did make for a good allegory)

e11en's review

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challenging emotional funny reflective slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? N/A
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0


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jenno's review against another edition

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slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes
What is there to say about this? I know I wouldn't gotten through it if it wasn't for the audio because it is so hard to read and stay focused. And in the end it just does end so what was the point in writing ~1000 pages? That's how I feel anyway. Wouldn't recommend because I spent so many hours with this and while it made me laugh at times it just blabber most of the time. And nothing really comes of it.

kelly_virginia's review against another edition

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challenging dark reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

3.0

kpdoessomereading's review against another edition

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adventurous emotional funny informative reflective sad tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? It's complicated
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

5.0

A one of a kind reading experience. Loved it!

dpj's review against another edition

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adventurous challenging dark emotional funny hopeful informative inspiring lighthearted mysterious reflective relaxing sad tense slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.5

suvata's review against another edition

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3.0

• Reading Envy Podcast Readalong for June 2020

Reading this book was like being the head of a neurotic for 1,000 pages. This never-ceasing stream of consciousness actually made me anxious at times (bring on the Xanax). Yet, there was something compelling about the writing that made me want to keep reading. I do a lot of practice to control my “monkey mind“. This book was 30+ hours“ of pure, unadulterated “monkey mind”. A veritable encyclopedia of the first part of the 21st Century in America — Very unique and hard to rate.

jmcook's review against another edition

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challenging funny sad slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0