Written by: Mona Awad
Read by: Sophie Amoss
11 Hours and 45 Minutes
Imprint: Penguin Audio
Genre: Fiction – Literary
Literary Release Date: June 11, 2019
Jon Swift + Witches of Eastwick + Kelly ‘Get In Trouble’ Link + Mean Girls + Creative Writing Degree Hell! No punches pulled, no hilarities dodged, no meme unmangled! O Bunny you are sooo genius!” —Margaret Atwood, via Twitter
“A wild, audacious and ultimately unforgettable novel.” —Michael Schaub, Los Angeles Times
“Awad is a stone-cold genius.” —Ann Bauer, The Washington Post
The Vegetarian meets Heathers in this darkly funny, seductively strange novel from the acclaimed author of 13 Ways of Looking at a Fat Girl
“We were just these innocent girls in the night trying to make something beautiful. We nearly died. We very nearly did, didn’t we?”
Samantha Heather Mackey couldn’t be more of an outsider in her small, highly selective MFA program at New England’s Warren University. A scholarship student who prefers the company of her dark imagination to that of most people, she is utterly repelled by the rest of her fiction writing cohort–a clique of unbearably twee rich girls who call each other “Bunny,” and seem to move and speak as one.
But everything changes when Samantha receives an invitation to the Bunnies’ fabled “Smut Salon,” and finds herself inexplicably drawn to their front door–ditching her only friend, Ava, in the process. As Samantha plunges deeper and deeper into the Bunnies’ sinister yet saccharine world, beginning to take part in the ritualistic off-campus “Workshop” where they conjure their monstrous creations, the edges of reality begin to blur. Soon, her friendships with Ava and the Bunnies will be brought into deadly collision.
The spellbinding new novel from one of our most fearless chroniclers of the female experience, Bunny is a down-the-rabbit-hole tale of loneliness and belonging, friendship and desire, and the fantastic and terrible power of the imagination.Named a best book of Summer 2019 by Entertainment Weekly, NPR, Newsweek, Vanity Fair, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, Elle, Cosmopolitan, Harper’s Bazaar, Vulture, Nylon, Bustle, TheSkimm, Purewow, and LitHub. https://www.penguinrandomhouseaudio.com/book/576726/bunny/
I voluntarily reviewed an advance reader’s copy of this book. No remuneration was exchanged and all opinions presented herein are my own except as noted.
I am certain this book is among the strangest pieces I have ever read. Even my husband, catching the occasional few minutes of the narration tasked if it was literary fiction. At times I didn’t know if just the character, the writer or I was losing my grip on reality. Was there something paranormal going on or was Samantha, the newest member of a “The Heathers”-like clique just going off-the-rails. Is Samantha magically creative or just creative. Where is the line between crazy and creative, between the art and the the delusion, between the characters created on a page and real beings walking the earth?
My over riding thought throughout the book was that it was a book by a person with a self-perceived disenfranchised character with emotional issues so bizarrely portrayed that I believed the author must also be disturbed. Honestly, I doubt it is the case, but the entire book disturbed me.
There are several twists, but while the characters did not necessarily see the outcome, I was able to deduce several but, nonetheless, I was surprised by a few. And those took me back to the question of the character’s sanity. In either event, there story depends on a willingness in the reader to seriously suspend disbelief.
I haven’t figured out if I liked Bunny; I am not sure if it was about cliques, magic, sanity, creativity, or a combination of these things. Frankly I ws annoyed, but can recall the kind of desire to belong that ends up being a downfall.
The narration by Sophie Amoss is fine, although the character comes off as tough, not vulnerable.
I am not big on fiction that requires the machinations of literary calculus. I enjoyed the end of the book, but thought the loss involved was a little harsh. On the other hand, the author is inventive with the form and her use of descriptive language is uncanny. I look forward to more work by Mona Awad — it is sure to be interesting.