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Ducks, Newburyport: Longlisted for the Booker Prize 2019 by [Ellmann, Lucy]
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Ducks, Newburyport: Longlisted for the Booker Prize 2019 Kindle Edition

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Length: 1020 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Language: English

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"A wildly ambitious and righteously angry portrait of contemporary America." --The Observer

"Ulysses has nothing on this ... Once you get going, you'll be too absorbed to stop." --Cosmopolitan (UK)

"Is it worth the considerable time and effort required to get through 728 densely packed pages to journey into the mind of this funny and insanely loveable worrywart? Yes! It's a jaw-dropping miracle." --Library Journal (starred review)

" deep and broad and beautiful and American as the Grand Canyon. Because this torrent spills from the mind of one ordinary woman (an Ohioan, a wife, a mom, a baker of pies), because she's hilarious, because her doubts and deprecations, her fondnesses and fears, are so mundane and relatable, because she exists as one of the truest-to-life fictional characters you could ever hope to meet, this book probably won't get the credit it deserves, credit for originality, insight, and literary excellence. Which is a shame, because Ducks, Newburyport is a domestic national epic to set beside Moby-Dick, a corrosive comic cultural indictment to compare with William Gaddis's National Book Award-winning J R. Read it and weep from laughter and righteous anger." --James Crossley, Madison Books (Seattle, WA)

"How fitting that Lucy Ellmann's revelatory and groundbreaking novel, Ducks, Newburyport is arriving on the centennial of Sherwood Anderson's famous Winesburg, Ohio. Not only are both novels keenly perceptive in exploring the daily lives of "very common people" in rural Ohio, but Ellmann's modernist masterpiece is primed to be as influential for the future of fiction as Winesburg was in its time. Ducks' innovative style works wholly in its favor--the novel is accessible, heartfelt, and absorbing as it portrays the mind of a middle-aged mother who tries to manage the hectic demands of family and household, all the while constantly assailed by her own memories, guilt, and second-guessing. Ellmann's protagonist worries about it all, from gun violence, Trump, and polluted drinking water, to soft boiling eggs, cleaning behind the refrigerator, and perfecting a lemon drizzle cake recipe. If it sounds quotidian, it is. But it is also brilliant, real and very much alive." --Lori Feathers, Interabang Books (Dallas, TX)

"A contemporary Molly Bloom soliloquy, a paginated lioness, a corrective, a challenge, a Moby-Dick of the kitchen...In 2019's most ambitious novel Ellmann puts us in the mind of one of literature's most neglected characters; an average woman and mother doing her best in a world that respects neither women nor mothers. Rambunctiously political, tenderly personal, and profoundly humanist, Ellmann's simple respect for her protagonist's thoughts, feelings, faults, & successes is revolutionary. And on top of everything else in this towering achievement of a novel, you'll find yourself desperately rooting for a mountain lion." --Josh Cook, Porter Square Books (Cambridge, MA)

"A stunning and brutal portrait of social and psychological dysfunction in Donald Trump's America as told through an exhaustive catalog of an Ohio mother's endless anxieties alternating with the story of a mountain lioness caring for and protecting her new pups in a country hostile to wilderness. At times challenging, and alternately profound and upsetting, I've never read anything quite like it. Lucy Ellman‟s ambitious, 700 page new book is either insane or brilliant or maybe both." --Josh Niesse, Underground Books (Chattahoochee Hills, GA)

"[An] unspooling of the bitter, hilarious, emotionally riveting, mundane, angry, overstuffed, and extraordinary mind of a 21st century Ohioan everywoman. No novel I've read about contemporary America has managed to do quite what Ellmann has done in Ducks, Newburyport, which insists that in order to close in on the truth, we must move beyond the dictates of tidy realism, the confines of the so-called stream-of-consciousness and the limits of orderly arranged sentences, and to find a way to fit everything between the pages of a book so bursting with exuberance and energy that its pages rustle on their own when you put it down. It is, as I hope is obvious to many readers, a masterpiece." --Stephen Sparks, Point Reyes Books (Point Reyes Station, CA)

"The fact that Ducks, Newburyport is over 700 pages, nearly all of which is a single sentence, should not daunt the reader. The book is an unputdownable rant by an anonymous homemaker and pie baker in Tuscarawas County, Ohio. Our narrator streams a running commentary on small-town life, marriage and re-marriage, gun violence, the rise of hate in Trump‟s America, and her analysis of Little House on the Prairie. It all ratchets up to a startling climax that rewards the reader for their persistence." --Grace Harper, Mac's Backs (Cleveland, OH)

"Ducks, Newburyport is, without hyperbole, a landmark work of genius. Indisputably so, and yet that feels like inadequate praise for what Lucy Ellmann is doing here. Ducks resembles a Dewey Decimal card catalog dedicated to post-9/11 Americana being rifled through at warp speed or the collected stories of Diane Williams algorithmically rewritten with a Great Lakes accent. Superlatives fall short, especially when we're talking about a book that flouts the fusty conventions of the canon so wildly. "Landmark", sure. "Genius", of course. More importantly, Ellmann is writing something so free from the standards of those well-trodden terms that they begin to lose all meaning. And thank heavens for that." --Justin Walls, Powell's Books (Portland, OR)

"At first glance, Ellmann's paragraph-indentation-free-harangue-of-a text seems daunting, but then the reader becomes completely sucked in ... Reading Ducks, Newburyport feels like pulling apart an intricately embroidered quilt. It's at once an act of destruction but it feels so satisfying as you see the material of what was become something new. At the beginning of the book I felt excited to begin the epic stretching out ahead of me. By the end of the book, I was left with thread: a basic knowledge of my own humanity that I could only get too through a process of this diligent unraveling. It's an accomplishment. It's devastating and necessary." --Ida Cuttler, Women and Children First (Chicago, IL)


"[Ellmann] demonstrates her many skills as a writer: an unsentimental eye for the incongruities of modern life; a bawdy sense of humor, and a distinctive voice, by turns angry and regretful, poetic and dyspeptic . . . It is in these last few pages of the book that Ms. Ellmann demonstrates that she is not merely a clever collage maker, but a gifted writer capable of exploring the tragedies as well as the absurdities of family life." --Michiko Kakutani, New York Times

"When I first read Ellmann, I loved her bizarreness, her ferocious humour. But she's even angrier now, more indignant, and that's what gives this book its sly substance. The streak of fury that runs through it is stealthy, apparently feminine, cloaked in ditziness. But underneath there are claws and teeth. --Julie Myerson, Guardian

"Ellmann transcends the novel form--she's in a class of her own." --Cosmopolitan

"[I]t's somehow hard not to be optimistic in the hands of a writer so angry and intelligent." --Patrick Ness, Guardian

"I have been told that reviewers complained about the use of screaming capitals in Lucy Ellmann's first book, which is why she now packs every page with them . . . Her latest novel, a melded spoof of medical romances and Jane Eyre, is as lunatic and splenetic and distinctive as anything that will be published this year . . . I begin to suspect she may be some sort of genius." --Victoria Lane, Telegraph

"Funny, angry, sarcastic and utterly individual, Ellmann has been described as 'one of literature's most well-kept secrets'." --Alison Flood, Observer

"Ellmann's writing is fearless . . . a whistle-stop tour of the paraphernalia that litters all our minds. Oddments that most of us notice and discard are here burnished into literary devices." --Alice Fishburn, Financial Times

"A true poet . . . Ellmann is a bright and shining talent." --Meredith Phillips, Austin Chronicle

"Original, funny and slickly written . . . an angry and imaginative tour de force, salted with caustic insights and sweetened with pathos." --Daily Mail

"For all its satire and tricksy inter-textuality...simply a big happy book about loving women. Now that's shocking." --Melissa Katsoulis, Times

"Rarely has there been such a mischievous affirmation of the meaninglessness of existence." --Lisa Allardice, Telegraph

"A lively ride ... bolshy, life-affirming, feminist and energetic. It makes you long to chuck your job, gulp oysters and run naked through the surf. This is all wonderful." --Lucy Atkins, Sunday Times

"If there were a laureate for anger, it should go to Lucy Ellmann." --Stuart Kelly, Scotland on Sunday

Product Description


Latticing one cherry pie after another, an Ohio housewife tries to bridge the gaps between reality and the torrent of meaningless info that is the United States of America. She worries about her children, her dead parents, African elephants, the bedroom rituals of "happy couples", Weapons of Mass Destruction, and how to hatch an abandoned wood pigeon egg. Is there some trick to surviving survivalists? School shootings? Medical debts? Franks ’n’ beans?

A scorching indictment of America's barbarity, past and present, and a lament for the way we are sleepwalking into environmental disaster, Ducks, Newburyport is a heresy, a wonder—and a revolution in the novel.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1680 KB
  • Print Length: 1020 pages
  • Publisher: Galley Beggar Press (4 July 2019)
  • Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B07R12JWKY
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #14,496 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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