Bunny

Bunny Samantha Heather Mackey Couldn T Be 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. NOW AVAILABLE this book is straight up bonkers seeing this was set at an elite new england university with an exclusive clique at its center and seeing it compared to Heathers, i went into it expecting a Megan Abbott y The Secret History y type of deal full of those dark and toxic currents that define adolescent girlhood, where affection shifts into power struggle at the drop of a hat, but also featuring a bunch of soulless smarty pants big on ritualistic gatherings and down for some light murder yes and pleasethis is not that which is not to say it s bad AT ALL, it s just not what i thought i was getting into it is ALSO not, although this is frequently true of other books, that it is being misrepresented by overzealous marketing you see, it is also compared to The Vegetarian, which i have not read, but now that i ve looked into that book , if i HAD read it, i probably would have been less taken aback by what this book actually is which is, as previously stated, bonkers this is The Secret History through the looking glass, carroll s white rabbit split into four excessively co dependent MFA students twitchy and touchy feely and calling each other bunny, operating symbiotically as a we each maintaining a specifically regimented style of expression in appearance and craft, but otherwise inseparable.samantha, our narrator and entry into this world, is the fifth person in the workshop, on the awkward periphery of these cooing girls who always seem to be monkey grooming one another and giggling and sparkling all over the place unlike the bunnies, who are rich and well assimilated in the jargony twaddle of MFA programs the world over I appreciate the uncertainty the piece gestures toward I just think she could go further into the dream space It s so interesting how she performs and reenacts trauma , samantha is planted firmly in outsider territory a scholarship student whose darker themes are called angry, mean, and distant by the bunnies, from whom she seems content to maintain her distance aloof and sarcastically eviscerating them from afar alongside her art school dropout bestie ava she of the fishnet gloves and veil, the asymmetrical haircut and tattered underwear as outerwear look and then, unexpectedly, samantha is formally, by way of origami swan, invited into the bunnies inner circle, where she learns an awful lot about creativity, process, vulnerability, and true power.so yeah, it s VERY reminiscent of Heathers, with its interplay of the frivolous and the dark and the comedic, as well as individual and group dynamics, but it s just as much molly ringwald and annie potts in Pretty in Pink outsider snark as a weapon against the allure of the wealthy pretty people, and the spiritual cost of capitulation which john hughes never addressed, but i always inferred , and a vision board collage of style and theme that s like Desperately Seeking Susan and Pump Up the Volume and Heathers and 92% of john hughes oeuvre and also, oddly, the spice girls, since the bunnies adopt a particular quirky fashion based persona that sets them apart within their collective persona.it s not bonkers right out of the gate at first, it seems like it s gonna be a fun poking campus novel this book is so funny in its depiction of the MFA world the fetishizations and the relentless cleverness and posturing and critiques, which i can only imagine is much worse now as millennials tiptoe thru the triggers trying to make art that offends no one and supplying feedback that is nothing but praise, even for the kind of self consciously manufactured glop people like the bunnies produce like the one samantha calls the Duchess, who writes inaccessible and cryptic pieces, she calls proems, etched on panes of glass using a dagger shaped diamond she wears around her neck or the work of the one samantha has dubbed Vignette, who shares a series of unpunctuated vignettes about a woman named Z who pukes up soup while thinking nihilistic thoughts, then has anal sex in a trailer, for whom samantha has little patience.I hate Vignette s pieces They are dreary word puzzles I m always too bored and annoyed to solve Each paragraph is a half smile, half frown, way up its own asshole Also, they beg questions like when on her perilous, pirouetting journey from Interlochen to Barnard was she ever in a trailer but, of course, in a workshop of four hydra like girls and a fawning mentor, an outsider does not have the luxury of honestly speaking her mind What do you think, Samantha Fosco asks me.That it s a piece of pretentious shit That is says nothing, gives nothing That I don t understand it, that probably no one does and no one ever will That not being understood is a privilege I can t afford That I can t believe this woman got paid to come here That I think she should apologize to trees Spend a whole day on her knees in the forest, looking up at the trembling aspens and oaks and whatever other trees paper is made of with tears in her languid eyes and say, I m fucking sorry I m sorry that I think I m so goddamned interesting when it is clear that I am not interesting Here s what I am I m a boring tree murderess.But I look at Vignette, at Creepy Doll, at Cupcake, the Duchess All of them staring at me now with shy smiles I think I d like to see of the soup too, I hear myself say.samantha herself is not immune to that stereotypically, overly fussy brand of MFA writing, even though we don t get to see much of the work she produces for the workshop however, as the narrator, everything is filtered through her descriptions, and the prose is precise, overly crafted the reader is bludgeoned with adjectives, with a particular emphasis on smells pinned into place with poetic words, where the bunnies outfits are described in every scene, creating a sensory overload that is frequently original and poetic, but is sometimes just too much don t get me wrong, i loved most of the writing, She shivers at the view of the grand trees, as if they re not trees at all but something truly vile, like all the rosy blond light that seems to forever bathe the campus is about to punch her in the face like a terrible fist of rich.there s just a lot of chewy prose here and sometimes it s a description bog.and then bonkers ensues.it s really fun and sharp and shivery, with a macabre fairy tale overlay that gives it a unique spin on the coming of age tale coming of age might seem misplaced, considering these are MFA students, but they read much younger than their actual age not just the self consciously girly girl bunnies, but also in the themes samantha brings to the narrative her awkwardness and loneliness and leftover adolescent self consciousness about fitting in finding her place for all of her ostensible disgust at the bunnies, their camaraderie is not without appeal for someone defined by loneliness and survival mode embracing of their own otherness it may not have been the book i thought i was going to read, but it was a very pleasant surprise, and even though i am being intentionally vague about where this one ll take you, i encourage you to find out for yourself, because bonkers is way better than boring that was unexpected i need to process this one a little bit review TK.come to my blog Hmmmm..I have no idea what I just read or how to review it Does that work as a proper review I m not even going to attempt discussing the plot becausebecause See I truly don t know how to Bizarre, strange, peculiar, unusual are just a few words that come to mind if I had to try and describe this mind fuck of a book It s a very slip streamy type of novel A novel in which the entire time I read I had no idea what was going on and I still don t Not a fucking clue And then they hug each other so hard I think their chests are going to implode I would even secretly hope for it from where I sat, stood, leaned in the opposite corner of the lecture hall, department lounge, auditorium, bearing witness to four grown women my academic peers cooingly strangle each other hello Or goodbye Or just because your so amazing, Bunny How fiercely they gripped each other s pink and white bodies, forming a hot little circle of such rib crushing love and understanding that it took my breath away And the nuzzling of ski jump noses and peach fuzzy cheeks Temples pressed against temples in a way that made me think of the labial rubbing bonobo or the telepathy of beautiful murderous children in horror films All eight of their eyes shut tight as if this collective asphyxiation were a kind of religious bliss All four of their glossy mouths making squealing sounds of monstrous love that hurt my face I love you, Bunny Did I like it I kind of did I can t deny the talent of this author She s a wordsmith without a doubt This book is being compared to Heathers and I think it s an appropriate comparison only this book is so much stranger So much weirder Some of the observations made by Samantha, our narrator, are downright snarky and hilarious and I was digging the vibe but then it all gets to be a bit too much A bit too out there even for a weirdo like me Toward the end of the book I came across this quote in which I highlighted because it summed up my thoughts exactly JUST SAY IT TELL ME WHAT HAPPENED TELL ME WHAT THE FUCK THIS MEANS AND WHAT YOU DID EXACTLY 3 WTF just happened stars Thank you to Edelweiss Viking Books for providing me with a digital ARC in exchange for my honest review. Okay, what just happened here I ll quote one of the characters to explain my feelings about Bunny And then I feel like screaming JUST SAY IT TELL ME WHAT HAPPENED TELL ME WHAT THE FUCK THIS MEANS The publisher s blurb doesn t even begin to capture what happens in Bunny At first, I thought I d be reading an R rated version of Mean Girls As I read, I found that wasn t quite right, so then I thought, Okay, maybe it s Stephen King does Mean Girls It turned out that that description didn t capture it, either The best I can come up with is Stephen King trips on acid and writes an R rated Mean Girls Bunny is so strange that it s hard to form an opinion, but I think I liked it Maybe my opinion will change after I sit with it a bit, or maybe I ll be equally as confused The weirdness did make some parts of the the plot hard to follow, but I think Bunny is supposed to be disorienting by design On another note, I appreciated Awad s sense of humor, which is on full display when she describes the Bunnies for the first time She definitely places us right inside the MC s head This novel is so odd that it s not going to be for everyone, but I d rate this a 3.5 5 rounded up to 4 stars.Thanks to Edelweiss and Viking for providing me with a DRC of this novel. Find all of my reviews at Stars We never joke about bunnies, Bunny A new release with comparisons to an old high school fave Obviously I had to read it But now that it s over I m not exactly sure what to say I stumbled across another review that said this book was so far up its own ass it wasn t even funny I ll give you that Bunny is a book that is up its own ass, but that s kind of the entire point and it s most certainly pretty funny Please don t get to thinking I suddenly believe myself to be smart enough to pick up on alllllllll that was being put down, but I did read a pretty bigly chunk of this with a smirk on my face because it was exactly what comes to my mind as soon as the term MFA starts being dropped around places such as Goodreads I even chuckled a time or two while reading about the Ivy League elite s creative struggles Now Eleanor, I hope you re not writing about a boy too, Fosco says Eleanor suddenly smiles Of course not, Ursula I d never be that stupid But as it turns out I brought the wrong story, she says looking at me My mistake And I can totally relate to how hard it is to get shit done with a bunch of stupid Bunnies fucking everything up and when not so boyfriend material book boyfriends keep coming along to ruin a potentially good time The only thing that would have made this better was if it were a musical That would be absolutely I have no clue who to recommend this to Freaks and geeks Or anyone who seeks out experiences like this Or anyone who would want to be in a book club with someone like Mitchell. Samantha is a graduate student with writer s block She s from a poor background and doesn t really fit in at moneyed Warren University, where her four workshop partners have formed an insular clique They call themselves the Bunnies they literally all call each other Bunny and their conversations are studded with declarations of love, cliched Instagram hashtag phrases and sycophantic compliments on the brilliance and originality of one another s work From the sidelines, Samantha finds it nauseating, even as she nurses a deep envy.Something s off about Warren from the beginning Though it s an Ivy League school, its environs are plagued by frequent incidences of extreme violence random decapitations, for example It made me think of Buffy the Vampire Slayer s Sunnydale with all the weirdness erupting around Warren, there has to be something Hellmouth ish about this place As seen through Samantha s eyes, the Bunnies are putting on a grotesque pantomime act as simpering sorority sisters, their cutesy, indulgent personalities taken to such extremes that they cross over into horror And when Samantha is finally invited to join the club, she discovers exactly how far and how deep that horror goes.The main problem with Bunny is Samantha s best friend, Ava The way she speaks to Samantha is, I guess, intended as appealingly blunt an antidote to the Bunnies cloying, insincere sweetness but it just comes off as nasty most of the time An art school drop out who carries a flask of alcohol labelled Drink Me , says things like the breeze is my lover and goes around wearing a fishnet veil, she s basically the 10 most insufferable hipsters you ve ever met combined into one person As it turns out, there are reasons for Ava s bluntness and clicheness, but I m not convinced her appearances are meant to be as irritating as I found them.On the other hand, the Bunnies are ostensibly the villains, but they re great, such fun to read about A mean girl clique subverted identikit teen drama bitches given agency, wit and dark appetites They may be awful, but they re awful in such novel ways airheads who are fiercely intelligent, saccharine child women who revel in power and blood that I loved them The hallucinatory chapter in which Samantha submits to the Bunnies hivemind is probably the best segment of the book trippy, dreamlike, creepy as fuck I wanted of the Bunnies, of Samantha and the Bunnies, and less Samantha on her own, less Ava Preferably no Ava at all The blurb positions Bunny as The Vegetarian meets Heathers , which is maybe useful than accurate the reference to The Vegetarian serves as a handy indicator of how incredibly weird it is, but tells you nothing about the story Personally, I d say Bunny reminded me of Marisha Pessl s Special Topics in Calamity Physics crossed with the craziest, most far fetched parts of David Mitchell s Slade House, and I d be inclined to reference Buffy and Chilling Adventures of Sabrina instead of Heathers It also made me think of Katie Lowe s The Furies, which in some ways is the inverse of this novel grimly, disgustingly real where Bunny is all bizarro Technicolor but both are about young women experimenting with black magic, and both are full to bursting with lush, overblown prose.It s just so much, but in a good way And I would love to see a film or TV adaptation My mouth is watering just imagining the luxuriant excess and creative gore of this story on screen.I received an advance review copy of Bunny from the publisher through Edelweiss.TinyLetter Twitter Instagram Tumblr Loved the snarky sentences for awhile, but riding the rollercoaster of caustic commentary has only so much charm eventually this book starts to feel as mean spirited and vacuous as the rest of our modern discourse The ubiquitousness of this way of telling stories makes me feel like a sick and drowning rat in a storm sewer, and this is not a feeling I turn to literature to have.If you suspect everyone may be a nightmare human and want to have those feelings validated, this is your book Having had my own grad school agonies, I understand this was probably written in the heat of that special circle of hell But I need not dwell there to comprehend it I quit before the end. 2 starsThere are those bizarre and experimental books that manage to be entertaining, transgressive, and on occasion even thought provoking And then, there are books like Bunny whose weirdness largely rests on overusing the word bunny which appears approximately 350 times, one time too many An intentionally silly story that owes to Scream Queens and The Babysitter then Heathers or Mean Girls. If you are picking up Bunny thinking that it is some sort of intriguing campus novel, you should reconsider given that this book is the anthesis to The Secret History If you are hoping for some sort of absurdist black comedy la Yorgos Lanthimos, think again The satirical horror I was hoping to encounter in Bunny was largely MIA.Each page of this novel tries to be sarcastic by exaggerating the mannerisms and words of certain groups of people in this case a creative writing clique which made for a weary reading experience Writing about writing is never an easy endeavour since there is the high risk that you will remind your readers that they are indeed reading a fictitious work Since the main cast in Bunny is part of a creative writing MFA programwe were constantly reminded of how inane criticism can be The five girls part of this program are apparently only able to write fiction that reflects their personal life or preferencesfunnily enough, a lot of the criticism that these characters throw at each other s pieces of writing could easily be aimed at Bunny oh, the irony Um, what the fuck is this, please This makes no sense This is coy and this is willfully obscure and no one but the author will ever get this spoiled, fragmented, lazy, pretentious And then I feel like screaming JUST SAY IT TELL ME WHAT HAPPENED TELL ME WHAT THE FUCK THIS MEANS AND WHAT YOU DID WITH HIM EXACTLY Four of these girls are part of a clique that is the ultimate parody of cliques From the first few pages they are presented as some sort of hive mind , some sort of multi conscious entity Some of their conversations between them as well as the narrator s observations about them could be amusing Although the narrator keeps insisting that she is different aka the only big difference between her and the bunnies is her finances she falls prey to this clique Personally, I don t think the story provides with a convincing reason for the MC to fall in with these girls Even when the Mc sees their most secretive activitiesit seemed that she stayed with them out of laziness or merely as a way to further the plot.The weirdness of this story seems contrived This whole novel seems rather ironically like an exercise for a creative writing class Many of the bizarre elements in this story were predictable and had me rolling my eyes The whole book is like a joke that goes on for too long The first few chapters were amusing and the scenes that took place in the creative writing workshop were on point and reminded me of the creative writing module I took in my first year of uni Samantha, we re at Warren The most experimental, groundbreaking writing school in the country This goes way beyond genre It subverts the whole concept of genre And gender narratives And the patriarchy of language Not to mention the whole writing medium It basically fucks the writing medium, Samantha Which is dead anyway, you know Exactly This is about the Body Performing the Body The Body performing in all its nuanced viscerality Yet, soon enough the repetitiveness of these exchanges grew tiresome and the style of the narrative became increasingly annoying and unnecessary The narrative mimics the language and perhaps vision of this clique of girls it is sweet, sticky, and extra If you like eating candy floss until you feel sick you might be up for itthe narrative if not the whole story is a parody that lacks subtlety or real wit Here at Mini they have many cupcakes in mini but they should have Why don t they have They should have in mini, We tell them how they should have in mini and they do not seem to make a note of it.The narrative s style was so repetitive All too frequently words were repeated three times in a row in a cheap attempt to give urgency to the story The plot if we can call it that even in its wtf moments is tedious The characters and story seem merely a backdrop to this sickeningly sweet and repetitive language hair like feathers, tiny pink y small ish hand, glossy this and that, teensy weensy girls who eat teensy weensy food.This book didn t inspire feelings of panic or fear, which I was expecting given its summaryI was never afraid of these demented girls and their stupid activities A lot of the things seem to just happen to the MC as if she isn t capable of these laughable terrible things from happening insert eye roll here Again, I find it ironic that the MC s own writing is criticised for this exact reason Although we could hardly call her a heroine, could we I mean, could we even call her that, Samantha She s quite passive, Samantha, isn t she I guess you could argue that this is all intentional The stupid characters, the saccharine and repetitive language, the MC s spinelessnessthese things come across this way on purposebut that seems like a cheap excuse to make the lazy and unfunny elements of your story deliberate The worst sin of all is that this book leaves us with a less than favourable opinion about writing and criticismwhich isn t a great message Read reviews on my blog This book is pure demented madness.I loved it I loved all of it and I think all of you weirdos should read it because you might just love it too Just don t ask me what it was about because I have no idea what the heck I just read and I am perfectly fine with that, haha I was in a huge book funk when my friend Emily recommend this book to me as a must read She knows her stuff and I listened and it was exactly what I needed I blew through this book in two days on audio and was so involved at one point that I walked into the shower with my headphones still in my ears By some strange turn of fate, I did not fry my earbuds or what is left of my brain and now I think may shell out some bucks for water proof earbuds because I think I just found myself a few minutes of reading time I think you should go into this book as blind as possible and I m not going to be the one to spoil any of its surprises and will keep it brief Samantha is a graduate student working on her MFA degree She has to go to workshop in order to complete her degree and, too bad for her, this workshop is infested with a cliquey group of young women who wear dresses with cupcakes and kittens on them, who only eat itty bitty food and who twitter and coo and call each other Bunny They ignored the darkling Samantha the previous year except to bitterly and cruelly critique her work Samantha is pretty okay with the status quo because who the hell wants to be a Bunny But one day Samantha receives a rare and coveted invitation to one of their Slut Salons and isn t sure what to do But she s as nosy as me, apparently, and against her better judgement she goes and the story pretty much goes batshit crazy from that point on and I couldn t describe it if I tried It truly has to be read to be believed So go read it This book is surreal, deliciously evil, and wickedly funny and the writing is weirdly addictive It s getting all the stars because I loved every single twisted turn and madness infused word within its pages You probably won t know exactly what you ve read once you finish it but I bet you ll be happy you read it The night is a dark earth I could dig my hands into forever. perhaps a Moorish prince with kohl lined eyes, familiar with unorthodox hair braiding techniques and the writings of Sade An Other but not a so Scary Other that he won t be able to make her tea with the dainty gestures of an anemic Englishman Wow, this is a blast Firstly, Awad can write her prose is fizzing and dynamic, surprising and just so fresh Add to that a weird, funny, oh so knowing storyline that shoots off allusions in all directions the campus novel, Mean Girls, The Secret History, Twilight esque tweenie books while also paying homage to Angela Carter s dark, feminist versions of fairy tales The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories and managing a blisteringly funny expos of Creative Writing programmes And piled up on that are observations on female friendship, Romance definitely with a capital R , fantasies of love and friendship, the way eroticism is culturally constructed and the complicated relationship it has with violence.I could see traces of Ottessa Moshfegh and Joyce Carol Oates in the dark and canny mix two of my favourite contemporary authors My only slight criticism is that the pacing can be a bit slow in parts, but this is so original, and manages to be clever, funny, creative, icky, a bit creepy, and sui generis all at once Many thanks to Head of Zeus for an ARC via NetGalley. We call them Bunnies because that s what they call each other Seriously Bunny.Example Hi, Bunny Hi, Bunny What did you do last night, Bunny I hung out with you, Bunny Remember, Bunny That s right, Bunny, you hung out with me and it was the best time I ever had.Bunny, I love you.I love you, Bunny And then they hug each other so hard I think their chests are going to implode I would even secretly hope for it from where I sat, stood, leaned, in the opposite corner of the lecture hall, department lounge, auditorium, bearing witness to four grown women my academic peers cooingly strangle each other hello Or good bye Or just because you re so amazing Bunny.I really liked Mona Awad s Bunny it s sardonically funny, but with very sad underpinnings like Eileen or Martin John two other books I loved for the same reason and it goes to some unreal extremes to explore loneliness, outsiderness, and the ways in which women can choose to support or destroy one another It does have a Mean Girls in the Ivy League vibe, but layered on top of that are dark and twisted fairy tales come to life which works so well When I read Awad s Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Fat Girl, I wished it had literary oomph this is the novel I was looking for Note I read an ARC and passages quoted may not be in their final forms As Bunny begins, Samantha Mackey is starting the second year of her MFA program at the prestigious Warren University the only full scholarship student among her all female cohort These other women are from very rich families, they clique together and dress like juveniles, and they all write aggressively feminist fiction with mythical twists The leader of the pack, whom Samantha has nicknamed Duchess, writes inscrutable proems on glass sheets with the dagger shaped diamond she wears around her neck the other Bunnies and their workshop advisor whom Samantha has nicknamed Fosco lap it up while Samantha rolls her eyes After suffering a year of her cohort giving unhelpful criticism during Workshop accusing Samantha of writing gritty outsider fiction for its own sake she finds herself suffering writer s block just as she is supposed to be using these last two semesters to polish up her thesis I don t always love books about writers especially books about struggling to finish an MFA , but Bunny delightfully skewers the premise They all watch me walk toward the stage at the center of the room, where they re all seated as though they re in a play In what Fosco likes to call the Hermeneutic Circle , aka a Safe Space in which to bravely bare our souls to one another in the form of cryptic word art Evoke our alchemical experiences and experiments In which our work will perform the Body and the Body will perform our work Whatever that means Even after a year at Warren, I m still not totally sure. Meanwhile, Samantha has spent the summer hanging out with her new friend, Ava a snarky freewheeling artist who backs up Samantha s unflattering estimations of her program and the Bunnies but when the Bunnies make gestures to include Samantha in their circle, Samantha is inextricably drawn to them even if it imperils her relationship with Ava After attending their Smut Salon and participating in their off campus Workshop , Samantha will be shown what performing the Body really means Bunny is ironically self aware Samantha internally critcises the Bunnies for writing about mythological lovers, and the Bunnies vocally criticise Samantha for writing outsider fiction, and yet Bunny is an outsider story that darkly references myths and fairy tales I don t know what the work performing the body means either, but I especially loved Awad s metaphors about the body When he looks at me, I feel my rib cage open like a pair of French doors Everything that keeps me alive suddenly bared and there for the taking. Or I want to scream But I just sit there My smile is fixed on my face, nailed there, though it jerks under the pins. And this is definitely feminist writing so many of the metaphors are about the female body Fosco looks at her class in her probing, intensely gynecological way There is a pause so pregnant it delivers, consumes its own spawn, then grows big with child again Ava explains about the Bunnies These cultish girlstried to eat her soul like a placenta From the intriguing line by line writing, to the surprising and insightful narrative, and the art that Awad employs to bring it all together, I loved everything about Bunny.

[Reading] ➰ Bunny  ➸ Mona Awad – Jobs-in-kingston.co.uk
  • Hardcover
  • 307 pages
  • Bunny
  • Mona Awad
  • English
  • 19 November 2018
  • 9780525559733