Literature / Blue Rabbit

Blue Rabbit is a young adult fantasy novel by Jimena Novaro published in 2013. It takes place in modern-day Knoxville, Tennessee, where a group of teenagers discover a path to another world. Before the novel starts, the kids—Erika, Haley, Sandra, Nathan, and Dorian—traveled several times to the other world to explore it. But one night two of their high school classmates followed them; one of them got kidnapped by the world's inhabitants and the other became convinced Erika and the others killed his friend.

The story starts out as Erika and her group enact a plan to kidnap one of the inhabitants of the other world, a Creature, in order to trade it for their missing classmate and clear their names. Things... don't go exactly as planned.

Blue Rabbit provides examples of:

  • Ambiguously Brown: Erika's ethnicity is never explicitly stated, and neither is Nathan's.
  • Another Dimension: The Creatures' world, where magic is real, appearances are malleable, and physics doesn't work like it does in our dimension.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Averted with Erika, who ends up burnt, bald, and blind as a consequence of her magic use.
  • Being Human Sucks: Certainly Ava Turner's viewpoint.
    Ava Turner: I don't care about any of that anymore, you stupid little girl. I can't go back. I've spent too much time in this disgusting human body, being infected by your world. I'm going to die a human death tonight, no matter what happens. Tonight, all of it will mean nothing, and I'll become fertilizer. Just like the rest of you.
  • Bittersweet Ending: When Erika closes the rift in the Creatures' world and the bridge between worlds, Riven dies and Chloe gets stuck on the other side to save Nathan. Sandra is still a Broken Bird, although she seems to be getting a little better.
  • Broken Bird: Sandra, all the way. There are hints she's had abusive relationships in the past. By the end of the novel, she's gone even further down this path, although there is some hope she'll be able to get better.
  • The Chooser of The One: Riven, who has been looking all his life for a Dark Human to turn into the Illuminated.
  • The Chosen One: Erika.
  • Chronic Hero Syndrome: Nathan is constantly trying to protect the people around him and blames himself when they're hurt. It gets him shot in the end.
  • Clear My Name: The motivation for the main characters at the beginning of the novel.
  • Coming-of-Age Story: Arguably the main theme of the novel. It does start out with a fragment of Ella Wheeler Wilcox's The Lost Garden, which is all about a child's desire for adulthood—and her disillusionment when she finally gets it.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Sandra, mostly, although several other characters get their turn.
  • Despair Event Horizon: Sandra's implied sexual liaison with Mr. Redwood in order to blackmail him is this.
  • The End of the World as We Know It: What will happen to both the Creature and the human worlds if Erika doesn't save them.
  • Five-Man Band:
  • Geek: Dorian, who loves science fiction, fantasy, and video games and has No Social Skills.
  • A God Am I: The more power Erika gains, the greater her god complex becomes. It certainly doesn't help that Riven and some of the other Creatures treat her like their Messiah.
  • The Heart: Haley often mediates in arguments between Erika and Sandra, and is probably the character with the least compromised morality (except for Chloe).
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Chloe sacrifices her humanity to save Nathan.
  • Humanity Ensues: It's a gradual transformation, but spending time in the human world slowly turns Creatures human, both physically and mentally. Some Creatures take it better than others.
  • Humanity Is Infectious: The more time the Creatures spend in the human world, the more human they become. In Riven's case, this means he feels torn between the two worlds and belongs in neither. He warns Chloe this will happen when he learns she wants to stay with the humans.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Erika is vain, self-involved, and has a healthy god complex exacerbated the more power she gains (and the more Riven and his Creatures worship her). But there's no doubt she loves her friends, and in the end, she gives up her power and the Creature world to go back to them.
  • No Social Skills: Dorian has some sort of disorder on the autism spectrum, and often has to rely on Haley and his friends to mediate between him and the outer world.
  • Troubled, but Cute: Riven.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Riven, again.
    Chloe: You must know that the one you call Riven is dangerous, Erika. Most probably to your enemies, but possibly to yourself. It is single-minded, as you say. If you clash with its purpose, it will not be kind. It does not give import to things that don't concern its purpose.