The End of the Story by Lydia Davis
This novel is more about the narrator’s process of organising thought than about the actual plot – which is very simple, lacking in drama and barely worth mentioning in this review. This makes The End Of The Story difficult to write about.
Whilst telling the story, Lydia Davis – as author, narrator, protaganist (the lines blur) – is also considering and discussing the best way to tell the story, telling us how difficult the story was to write and also about other pieces she is working on at the same time. The narrative is broken down in to parts and every motive, every memory, every piece of reason is questioned and examined. The protaganist does ill-advised things and then critiques her decisions, the narrator wonders whether she is remembering things correctly.
It is sometimes difficult, exhausting, boring, brilliant…
We start at the end of the story, loop back to the beginning, wander around the plot’s timeline and then finish at the end… hence ‘The End Of The Story’. But the title has a double meaning in that by the end of the novel, the story Lydia Davis is telling has been so completely deconstructed it does not seem it would be possible to put it back together again.