Trigger Warnings for this book: bestiality, murder, rape, assault, mental health, self harm.
Samantha is not the typical student you would on the famous Warren Creative Writing MFA, especially as a scholarship student. She is ostracised by the rest of her all-female cohort, a group of women who call one another “Bunny” and hug for too long. Then Samantha receives an invitation to their “smut salon”. As Samantha is dragged deeper into their sanctimonious world, the edges of fantasy and reality begin to blur, and the Bunnies push her to the edge.
Bunny is easily the strangest book I have ever read. When you get into this book, know this: you will spend half of it trying to decipher what exactly is going on.
This book is like a female Fight Club on acid mixed with Mean Girls at university. That is a strange combination, but I’m telling you, that’s exactly what it is. Even by the end of the book, I’m not entirely sure what happened.
It is incredibly hard to review this book without spoiling too much of the plot, but I shall do my best. The setting is a familiar playing ground for me: Samantha is on an MFA with only four others, and I am currently on an MA with 11 others. We are also working on our dissertations from home, and it’s very self-study focussed. I kind of understand her struggles with working alone and how it can feel like you’re going down a rabbit hole.
However, that is very much where our similarities end! I won’t spoil what happened in the book with Samantha, but she turned into a very different character. Though it’s narrated by her, I didn’t always understand her own thought processes, which is fascinating to read. She is an incredibly unreliable narrator, and by the end you’re not sure whether you ever should have believed anything she said or not.
Her narration is very unique, though. She has nicknames for everyone in her life, and these change as she develops new and different relationships, whether with them or with others. This was a really small but highly effective detail in conveying her personality shifts throughout the novel.
One thing I adored about this book was the writing, which was vivid and evocative. The entire world – no matter how strange – felt right in front of me, and the sentences seemed to undulate with one another to create this tidal wave of description. I am very excited to read more books by this author. But I don’t know if I’ll ever read Bunny again!
Have you read Bunny?