Rabbit Cake (Paperback)
"Annie Hartnett’s debut novel, Rabbit Cake, is a truly unique tale told through the eyes of 12-year-old Elvis, who is trying to make sense of the sleep-swimming death of her mother. While Elvis seeks to explain her loss through medical texts, her sister’s sleepwalking becomes out of control, and her father grieves by wearing his wife’s belongings.Through it all the Babbit family attempts to save one another as they try to heal. Rabbit Cake is an exploration of life, death, and how grief can tear a family apart, and put them back together. This debut is smart, dark comedy that you won’t be able to put down."--Reviewed by Susan— From Susan Recommends
March 2017 Indie Next List
“When Eva Rose Babbitt, mother of daughters Lizzie, 15, and Elvis, 10, drowns while sleep-swimming, her daughters are left to fend for themselves emotionally while their father tends to his grief by wearing his wife's bathrobe and lipstick. Elvis stays up at night, trying to keep Lizzie, a sleepwalker and sleep-eater, from burning the house down with her nocturnal 'cooking'. But Elvis doesn't trust the circumstances of her mother's death and is determined to finish her mother's book, The Sleep Habits in Animals and What They Tell Us About Our Own Slumber, so she does a little research of her own. Annie Hartnett has created endearing and memorable characters in a delightfully original story that is sure to become a beloved favorite of readers everywhere.”
— Kris Kleindienst (E), Left Bank Books, Saint Louis, MO
Elvis Babbitt has a head for the facts: she knows science proves yellow is the happiest color, she knows a healthy male giraffe weighs about 3,000 pounds, and she knows that the naked mole rat is the longest living rodent. She knows she should plan to grieve her mother, who has recently drowned while sleepwalking, for exactly eighteen months. But there are things Elvis doesn't yet know--like how to keep her sister Lizzie from poisoning herself while sleep-eating or why her father has started wearing her mother's silk bathrobe around the house. Elvis investigates the strange circumstances of her mother's death and finds comfort, if not answers, in the people (and animals) of Freedom, Alabama. As hilarious a storyteller as she is heartbreakingly honest, Elvis is a truly original voice in this exploration of grief, family, and the endurance of humor after loss.