Monday, October 24, 2022

"The Rabbit's Gift"

Jessica Vitalis is the author of The Wolf’s Curse. She is a full-time writer with a previous career in business and an MBA from Columbia Business School. An American expat, she now lives in Canada with her husband and two daughters.

Vitalis applied the Page 69 Test to her new novel, The Rabbit's Gift, and reported the following:
From page 69:
“Things are out of balance now, but nature always rights itself,” Maman said.

She sounded certain, but I wasn’t so sure. The Grande Maman in the Moon had honored our family with the responsibility of running the country—we even had a small chunk of moon rock on display at home to prove it. But that was back at the beginning of time. To my knowledge, none of us had heard from her since.

I couldn’t believe she’d really punish us for doing everything we could––including using science––to help her people. (For all we knew, maybe the drought was punishment for not doing science.) Then again, the last time Madame Pauline had tried to convince Maman to allow scientists into the country, she’d taken ill with a fever for more than a week.
This passage provides an excellent glimpse into the themes in The Rabbit’s Gift.

The story, a French twist on stork mythology, takes place in a country where human babies are grown in cabbage-like plants and delivered by rabbits. Told in dual points of view, one side features a scrawny rabbit determined to prove himself to his starving warren. The other point of view (featured above) is a girl by the name of Fleurine; she longs to study botany in order to unlock the elusive secrets growing in the rabbits’ warren, but she is the daughter of the most powerful woman in the country and expected to follow in her mother’s political footsteps. Even worse, science is frowned upon in Montepeyroux for fear that it might upset the natural order and offend the Grande Maman in the Moon. Fleurine is certain that the scientific advancements she’s heard of in other countries could help decrease their dependence on rabbits, and maybe even decrease the impact of the recent drought that has driven people to the cities in search of food. When Fleurine discovers Quincy Rabbit stealing her gardening supplies, she follows him back to the top-secret warren, setting off a string of events that could prove catastrophic for rabbits and humans alike.
Visit Jessica Vitalis's website.

Q&A with Jessica Vitalis.

The Page 69 Test: The Wolf's Curse.

--Marshal Zeringue