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Publisher's Summary

In this “little gem” (Washington Independent Review of Books), Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist and New York Times best-selling author Dave Barry learns how to age happily from his old but joyful dog, Lucy. 

As Dave Barry turns 70 - not happily - he realizes that his dog, Lucy, is dealing with old age far better than he is. She has more friends, fewer worries, and way more fun. So Dave decides to figure out how Lucy manages to stay so happy, to see if he can make his own life happier by doing the things she does (except for drinking from the toilet). He reconnects with old friends and tries to make new ones - turns out to be a struggle, because Lucy likes people a lot more than he does. And he gets back in touch with two ridiculous but fun groups from his past: the Lawn Rangers, a group of guys who march in parades pushing lawnmowers and twirling brooms (alcohol is involved), and the Rock Bottom Remainders, the world’s oldest and least-talented all-author band. 

With each new lesson, Dave riffs hilariously on dogs, people, and life in general, while also pondering deep questions, such as when it’s okay to lie. (Answer: when scallops are involved.) 

Lessons from Lucy shows listeners a new side to Dave Barry that’s “touching and sentimental, but there’s still a laugh on every page” (The Sacramento Bee). The master humorist has written a witty and affable guide to joyous living at any age. 

©2018 Dave Barry (P)2018 Simon & Schuster

What listeners say about Lessons from Lucy

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35 year fan

I've been a huge fan of Dave Barry for 35+ years and this book caught me off guard. It's different than all of his other material but amazing, possibly his best. It's not all funny (not intended to be) but very accurate & heartfelt. I went from tears of laughter (Comcast) to tears of sorrow (listen to epilogue!!!). Loved that he read the book himself. Dave, if you see this I was so relieved to hear the news at the end of your story. Saw you talk at UC Davis a very long time ago & am a fan for life.

10 people found this helpful

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Required Reading, Excellent Audio Book!

There are not many books that I have listened to where I can honestly say that I enjoyed each and every chapter. Lessons from Lucy might be the first. What a well done audio book!

There were parts where I was laughing out loud and had to replay portions and others that brought me to tears. Perhaps that is a representation of a life well lived - one full of both laughs and at times, tears.

14 people found this helpful

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Sweet and Relatable

I enjoyed listening to the book. I have 3 dogs and love, love them to death. I can relate to the things he mentioned and gave me good ideas on how I can be more in the present time with my family and stop checking my phone for updates on FB, IG, SC, and Twitter.

9 people found this helpful

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Appreciate what you have

This is a sweet, amusing, touching book - a good reminder to appreciate what you have and be positive. It wasn't a laugh-out-loud kind of book. Maybe it's funnier for Dave Barry fans, dog owners, and people who live in Florida.

3 people found this helpful

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A good perspective on life

The author frames this book as being somewhat self helpful at the same time he expresses cynicism about the self help genre. I didn’t really think of it as being a self help book at all. I thought of it as a brief memoir, filled with some insights and perspective that he has attained along the way of his seventy years on earth.

The book is warm, occasionally funny, contains lots of lovely Lucy stories, some interesting Dave stories, and a post Epilogue chapter that will break your heart. The narration is fine tho a smidge uneven in volume. This is my first Dave Barry book, but probably not my last.

7 people found this helpful

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I Need A Lucy In My Life!

I just finished listening to “Lessons From Lucy” by Dave Barry. As I wipe the tears from my eyes (SPOILER ALERT: You will laugh, you will cry, you will wet your pants...that is, if you even wear pants), I sigh slightly with a sense of satisfaction and wistfulness.

Satisfaction because while the book only lasts a little over four hours (well, five, if you count the time I fell asleep at 2:00 a.m. — because it was so good I had to keep listening — and hit the back button 86 times until I found where I last remembered), the book delivered on its title. It shared simple, yet profound lessons that would benefit any listener. Lessons from a dog...a large, loving, friendly, fun, content, honest, mindful (although, not always minding), grateful dog.

This is the first book I’ve listened to by Barry. I have seen him on television and YouTube numerous times, which interestingly, matched the voice I had heard in my head when I read his newspaper columns prior. Hearing Mr. Barry articulate his humor (as well as the later somber section, hence the tears) is an added layer of connection. While I love reading the turn of a good phrase, hearing an author intone his own words gives a deeper sense to their meaning, particular when it comes to humor.

I’m also feeling a bit wistful. Not only because an enjoyable experience is over, but also because I’m listening to this in late 2020. Barry wrote this book in 2017, and added a last lesson in late 2018. Every day, in some way, I am stunned by the dramatic shift in our collective perspective between pre-2020 and 2020 itself. It is eerily akin to 9/11 in how we view that event in terms of before and after. Everything changed after 9/11. These days, when reading or watching something involving an airport pre-9/11, especially when in an “airline travel is challenging” context, we shake our heads and say softly to ourselves, “if only we could back to those times...”

I experienced this same feeling often as I took in Lucy’s lessons... Were they applicable in the age of COVID? Were they too simplistic? I mean, it’s one thing for a dog to be chill during a once-a-decadeish-hurricane, as Lucy ably does so in this narrative. It is quite another to expect a dog to provide pearls of wisdom during a once-in-a-century pandemic.

But, you know what? The lessons of Lucy are even more relevant during this crisis. How to approach life, treat others and focus on what’s important...all are crucial for us to get through this. And we will get through this.

I’m also slightly wistful because, well, I’m going blind. I don’t share this to engender sympathy (okay, maybe a little — actually, just kidding; I am blessed and content, just like Lucy...trying to be, anyway.). I share this because audio books have been,for me, a recapturing, as it were, of the joy of reading. I can still see text a little bit with magnification and adjustment of contrast, but the process is slow and often frustrating. Listening to an author such as Barry tickle my funny bone, prompt me to nod in agreement about some foible of aging, and, yes, even cause me to sniffle and weep at times has been a satisfying return to literary immersion. Perhaps you, or someone you love, have vision issues and would appreciate the joy of “reading” again by listening to audio books. This one would be a great way to start!

By all means, buy and listen to this book! It will make Lucy wag her tail.

2 people found this helpful

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A wonderful book - the best!

made me laugh and cry, often at the same time. Dave Berry seemed to reach into my heart and reveal so many of my truths.

2 people found this helpful

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This is why you do Audible!

These kinds of gems are why you get books on Audible. Everyone (starting with elected officials and moving up to all dog people!) should learn from Lucy. Can you imagine what we could accomplish?!

2 people found this helpful

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  • Cw
  • 04-18-19

Wow!

Such a laugh out loud funny book, with excellent analogies, but profoundly moving as well. Loved it!!!

2 people found this helpful

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Laughed out loud!!

I love Barry’s dry humor. I listened over a week in my vehicle, and laughed out loud many times. I’ve already listened to some parts for a 2nd time, and still laughed out loud.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Mrs. Kaja Malouf
  • 04-14-19

A must read

Best thing I have read in a long time. Laugh cry and become enlightened. He is a brilliant story teller and you will walk away from this book feeling better.