This book is an incredible, kaleidoscopic, strange, intense, hilarious book, told in a series of stories that swirl around a young woman named Blandine and the semi-rundown building where she lives. The characters are so incredibly, intimately rendered, I've been thinking about them ever since I finished the book, wondering what they might be up to now. Recommended By Kelsey F., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
The Rabbit Hutch is a stunning debut novel about four teenagers — recently aged out of the state foster-care system — living together in an apartment building in the post-industrial Midwest, exploring the quest for transcendence and the desire for love.
"Gunty writes with a keen, sensitive eye about all manner of intimacies — the kind we build with other people, and the kind we cultivate around ourselves and our tenuous, private aspirations." — Raven Leilani, best-selling, award-winning author of Luster
The automobile industry has abandoned Vacca Vale, Indiana, leaving the residents behind, too. In a run-down apartment building on the edge of town, commonly known as the Rabbit Hutch, a number of people now reside quietly, looking for ways to live in a dying city. Apartment C2 is lonely and detached. C6 is aging and stuck. C8 harbors an extraordinary fear. But C4 is of particular interest.
Here live four teenagers who have recently aged out of the state foster-care system: three boys and one girl, Blandine, who The Rabbit Hutch centers around. Hauntingly beautiful and unnervingly bright, Blandine is plagued by the structures, people, and places that not only failed her but actively harmed her. Now all Blandine wants is an escape, a true bodily escape like the mystics describe in the books she reads.
Set across one week and culminating in a shocking act of violence, The Rabbit Hutch chronicles a town on the brink, desperate for rebirth. How far will its residents — especially Blandine — go to achieve it? Does one person's gain always come at another's expense? Tess Gunty's The Rabbit Hutch is a gorgeous and provocative tale of loneliness and community, entrapment and freedom. It announces a major new voice in American fiction, one bristling with intelligence and vulnerability.
"Here is something new, a first novel with the wisdom and tenderness of a masterwork; an unflinching look at the down and out that continues to rise and rise. The Rabbit Hutch is addictive, mesmerizing and unforgettable." — Marlon James, author of Black Leopard, Red Wolf
"Gunty's first novel is a weirdly absorbing read that captures the heart and soul of a Rust Belt town....A woefully beautiful tale of a community striving for rebirth and redemption; highly recommended." — Faye A. Chadwell, Library Journal (Starred Review)
"An astonishing portrait...It all ties together, achieving this first novelist's maximalist ambitions and making powerful use of language along the way. Readers will be breathless." — Publisher's Weekly (Starred Review)
About the Author
Tess Gunty earned an MFA in creative writing from NYU, where she was a Lillian Vernon Fellow. Her work has appeared in The Iowa Review, Joyland, Los Angeles Review of Books, No Tokens, Flash, and elsewhere. She was raised in South Bend, Indiana, and lives in Los Angeles.