Lucy Ellman, Ducks, Newburyport
reviewed by Strether Lambert
Date: September 10, 2019
Length: 1,040 pages
ISBN: 1771963077; 978-1771963077
The fact that I got up at three A.M. to pee, the fact that due to darkness and disorientation I overshot the bowl and peed on the rug, the fact that on the way back to bed I stepped on my sleeping cat’s tail, the fact that she went bonkers and scratched my leg, the fact that I’m too tired to give a f---, the fact that I’m going to have to borrow money to pay my taxes, the fact that half the world’s leaders are insane and the other half are idiots, the fact that between the time I peed to the time I got back in bed ten scam robocalls went to voicemail, the fact that at four-thirty the two drunks in the apartment below started fighting, the fact that the guy in the apartment next door to the two fighting drunks started banging on the wall and screaming “Shut the f--- up!”, the fact that the dog in the apartment next door to the guy next door to the two fighting drunks started barking, the fact that the baby in the apartment across from the apartment with the barking dog started crying, the fact that I got out of bed, stamped on the floor and screamed, “I hope you all get the latest mutated super-bug and die!”, the fact that a self-indulgent, mind-numbing, stream-of-consciousness slop bucket filled with word-puke can get published, make lots of money and win big prizes...
Editor’s Note: It is with profound sadness that we report the death of our long-time contributor, Strether Lambert. Mr. Lambert’s latest and, as it sadly turned out, final submission to this magazine was his review of Lucy Ellman’s Ducks, Newburyport.
We had anticipated receiving the review a week prior to its publication in this issue. Instead, we were shocked to receive a soiled and shredded copy of the novel with the above fragment scrawled on the flyleaf in what, the police now inform us, was Mr. Lambert’s blood. Without further comment on this tragic event, we publish the above unedited fragment in memory of a once fine writer.
Copyright © 2020 by Gary Inbinder