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Bunny

by Mona Awad

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
6433729,536 (3.63)15
"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 are often found entangled in a group hug so tight they become 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, a caustic art school dropout, in the process. As Samantha plunges deeper and deeper into the sinister yet saccharine world of the Bunny cult and starts to take part in their ritualistic off-campus "Workshop" where they magically conjure their monstrous creations, the edges of reality begin to blur, and her friendships with Ava and the Bunnies are brought into deadly collision. A spellbinding, down-the-rabbit-hole tale of loneliness and belonging, creativity and agency, and friendship and desire, Bunny is the dazzlingly original second book from an author whose work has been described as "honest, searing and necessary" (Elle)" --… (more)
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» See also 15 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 37 (next | show all)
Not in the mood for this one.
  Carmentalie | Jun 4, 2022 |
I saw Bunny on someone's PopSugar list for dark academia, and thought, ooh, I love dark stories set in schools! I loved Madam, The Secret History, Academy Girls, and so many others.

Bunny is set in a prestigious MFA program, in a cohort where there are four pretty girls who are best friends and affectionately call each other Bunny, and a fifth girl called Samantha who sits in Workshop hating them all. Well, it's not exactly a subtle book.

At least Bunny accurately describes MFA workshops, particularly a certain style of circular, congratulatory workshops and careful phrasing to avoid saying wtf was that? after a classmate's piece. Lots of talk about Work and Process, when obviously Work doesn't mean a paying job. But this kept going until I no longer felt like Samantha was an interesting fish out of water, a struggling writer among dilettantes, and more just wanted her to quit hating everyone around her or quit the program. (And since Samantha's main characteristic was scowling rebel, it seemed weird how many times she just drank random concoctions and swallowed unidentified pills in this story.) This was a novel when I was on Team Nobody. The Bunnies were too twee and annoying, while Samantha and Ava were self-consciously scowling outsiders, and all the MFA staff were the worst stereotypes of MFA staff.

And then the dark part of the dark academia. Obviously the Bunnies are up to something, and I enjoyed discovering exactly what that was. The magical worldbuilding was frustratingly inconsistent, and I spent a lot of the book wondering how things worked, and not in the exciting discovery way, more in the confused way. (Did the dead Drafts leave blood and bodies, or not? I still have no idea.) There was a couple moments when I thought the Bunnies were becoming maenads, with all the drunken celebration and bloody sacrifice that entails, but it never quite materialized.

I do like that this story featuring so many terrible MFA workshops prompts readers to leave workshop-style feedback. Interesting concept, look forward to reading the final version with developed characters and a consistent world. ( )
  TheFictionAddiction | May 8, 2022 |
Weird, fast paced, not sure where you’re going in the story. ( )
  caanderson | May 1, 2022 |
What a trip! I liked it but I don't think I can recommend it to people I know lol. ( )
  Luminous-Path | Mar 26, 2022 |
What can you say about a book like this one? Honest question.

Samantha's imagination is disturbing. Then the entire book spirals out of control and everything is disturbing as well. But so beautiful too. And then, it ends. I loved the ending. ( )
  Nannus | Jan 17, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 37 (next | show all)
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We call them Bunnies because that is what they call each other.
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"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 are often found entangled in a group hug so tight they become 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, a caustic art school dropout, in the process. As Samantha plunges deeper and deeper into the sinister yet saccharine world of the Bunny cult and starts to take part in their ritualistic off-campus "Workshop" where they magically conjure their monstrous creations, the edges of reality begin to blur, and her friendships with Ava and the Bunnies are brought into deadly collision. A spellbinding, down-the-rabbit-hole tale of loneliness and belonging, creativity and agency, and friendship and desire, Bunny is the dazzlingly original second book from an author whose work has been described as "honest, searing and necessary" (Elle)" --

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