The Rabbit Hutch


4.39 (36 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

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*The standout literary debut that everyone is talking about*

'Inventive, heartbreaking and acutely funny' Guardian

Blandine isn't like the other residents of her building.

An online obituary writer. A young mother with a dark secret. A woman waging a solo campaign against rodents - neighbours, separated only by the thin walls of a low-cost housing complex in the once bustling industrial centre of Vacca Vale, Indiana.

Welcome to the Rabbit Hutch.

Ethereally beautiful and formidably intelligent, Blandine shares her flat with three teenage boys she neither likes nor understands, all, like her, now aged out of the state foster care system that has repeatedly failed them, all searching for meaning in their lives.

Set over one sweltering week in July and culminating in a bizarre act of violence that finally changes everything, The Rabbit Hutch is a savagely beautiful and bitingly funny snapshot of contemporary America, a gorgeous and provocative tale of loneliness and longing, entrapment and, ultimately, freedom.

'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, author of Luster
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Product details

  • Hardback | 352 pages
  • 153 x 234 x 38mm | 570g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0861543653
  • 9780861543656
  • 7,498

Review quote

'A firecracker debut. Seriously impressive... The writing is incandescent, the range of styles and voices remarkable... There's so much dazzling stuff here.' -- The Sunday Times 'Inventive, heartbreaking and acutely funny.' -- Observer 'Here is something new, a first novel with the wisdom and tenderness of a masterwork; an unflinching look about 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 'Throughout, tension is mixed with hilarity, heartbreak with hope. It all makes for a gripping, memorable debut full of peculiar wonders.' -- Mail on Sunday 'Philosophical, and earthy, and tender and also simply very fun to read.' -- Rivka Galchen, author of Little Labours 'Gunty writes with a keen, sensitive eye about all manner of intimacies.' -- Raven Leilani, author of Luster 'Just when everything seemed designed for a brief moment of utility before its planned obsolescence, here comes The Rabbit Hutch, a profoundly wise, wildly inventive, deeply moving work of art whose seemingly infinite offerings will remain with you long after you finish it. Each page of this novel contains a novel, a world.' -- Jonathan Safran Foer, author of Everything is Illuminated 'Tess Gunty is a younger writer of uncommon originality, both in terms of voice and vision. I admire her work and expect to be reading it with especial delight for a long time to come.' -- Rick Moody, author of The Ice Storm 'As a testament to this book's generosity, the music of George Saunders, Dorothy Parker, David Foster Wallace, maybe Rachel Cusk emerges... The Rabbit Hutch aches, bleeds, and even scars but it also forgives with laughter, with insight, and finally, through an act of generational independence that remains this novel's greatest accomplishment, with an act of rescue.' -- Mark Danielewski, author of House of Leaves 'The Rabbit Hutch balances the banal and the ecstatic in a way that made me think of prime David Foster Wallace. It's a story of love, told without sentimentality; a story of cruelty, told without gratuitousness. Gunty is a captivating writer.' -- Guardian 'Summer's biggest literary debut... A powerful and brutal book, brimming with dark and funny lines.' -- Los Angeles Times 'Gunty's angry, coruscating debut [is] the most promising first novel I've read all year.' -- Wall Street Journal 'The Rabbit Hutch [is] a bewitchingly unique set of interlinked stories that I'm currently racing through.' -- Independent 'Exquisitely written, acutely observed and breathtakingly original. There was not a single page that didn't contain at least one phrase or sentence that I wanted to underline to return to later. Gunty's prose crackles with energy, wit and intent. Reading The Rabbit Hutch is like experiencing a literary hallucination! I loved it!' -- Claire McGlasson, author of The Rapture 'Tess Gunty is a masterful talent with a remarkable eye for the poetic, the poignant and the absurdly sublime. The Rabbit Hutch unspools the story of Blandine Watkins and other inhabitants of a rundown building on the edge of the once bustling Vacca Vale, Indiana. A brutal and beautiful novel that both delights and devastates with its unflinching depiction of Rust Belt decline, Gunty's debut is a tour de force that's sure to top this year's best-of lists.' -- Lauren Wilkinson, author of American Spy 'This breathtaking novel centres around the inhabitants of the Rabbit Hutch, a run-down apartment building at the edge of a dying city. Each of the inhabitants have their own challenges, but the four teenagers living there together are especially poised on the brink. Your allegiances will shift and shift again as the plot writhes toward a shocking, but inevitable, conclusion.' -- Good Housekeeping, '25 New Summer Books to Add to Your 2022 Reading List' 'Remarkable... Brilliantly imaginative... Gunty is a wonderful writer, a master of the artful phrase... Best of all, her fully realized characters come alive on the page, capturing the reader and not letting go.' -- Booklist (starred review) 'A stunning and original debut that is as smart as it is entertaining... With sharp prose and startling imagery, the novel touches on subjects from environmental trauma to rampant consumerism to sexual power dynamics to mysticism to mental illness, all with an astonishing wisdom and imaginativeness.' -- Kirkus (starred review) 'Gunty writes with such compassion for her characters as they build their lives and assert their agency in a country that utterly disregards them, and in particular Blandine's bright, fierce curiosity for the world kept me moving through the story; she's a warrior, an intellectual force, a young woman who refuses to be disempowered. This is a skillfully told, beautiful, human story.' -- Literary Hub 'Gunty debuts with an astonishing portrait of economically depressed Vacca Vale, Indiana, centered on the residents of a subsidized apartment building nicknamed the Rabbit Hutch... Readers will be breathless.' -- Publisher's Weekly (starred review)
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About Tess Gunty

Tess Gunty was born and raised in South Bend, Indiana. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from NYU, where she was a Lillian Vernon Fellow. Her fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in Joyland, The Iowa Review, Freeman's and other publications, and she lives in Los Angeles. The Rabbit Hutch is her debut novel.
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Rating details

36 ratings
4.39 out of 5 stars
5 53% (19)
4 33% (12)
3 14% (5)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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