LORD LOVE A DUCK by Al Hine

LORD LOVE A DUCK

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The author's third novel is set in Iowa although a more likely location might be some swamp- with Sanctuary's Popeye brooding over the orgiastic shenanigans. ""We lie loudest when we lie to ourselves"" is said at the beginning of the book- and the characters here cavort in a dim-lit world of unreality where there is no palpable truth distinguishable from the lie. The story opens after an attempted poisoning and then returns to the root of the evil. The larva of the story is merciless adolescence and in the local highschool everybody is busy with Driving Class, Citizenship and fornication. A butterfly emerges- Barbara Ann Green, a beautiful, brainless goddess coveted by Gooney Bird Musgrave, a bird of prey, hypnotist, genius and puppeteer toying with the lives of the youngsters around him. To add uncomfortable side issues, he has a sister Carolou, mentally defective and therefore useful to his schemes. Gooney arranges for Barbara to marry her counterpart, a Greek-god with narcissistic leanings, and eventually, to protect his bizarre physical dominance over Barbara, tries to poison the husband several times. The situation bursts as stickily as a lanced boil and one sniffs sensationalism at the core. However, the reader, whether amused or aghast, must pause to admire Mr. Hine's handling of his monstrous, mindless Iowans.

Pub Date: Feb. 21st, 1960
Publisher: Atheneum