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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
Out of the Rabbit Hutch is a work of historical fiction focused on culture and colonization, penned by author Nanette L. Avery. Set largely in America before and after the Civil War, in this story we meet Mallabal as he journeys from the destruction of what would eventually become Tasmania to the proposed freedom of America. As a free Aborigine, Mallabal’s involvement with the enigmatic Sydney Bushnell places him in a forbidden romance, causing problems from the first minute they lock eyes. Meanwhile, the other main character, Asa Young, is a veteran of the Civil War, recently released from an asylum in the hopes that the war has not broken his psyche totally, but only time will tell.
Complex and winding, with a huge set of unusual and interesting characters, the work of Nanette L. Avery takes time to get into, and you get even more out of it. This lavish work encapsulates so many different cultures, traditions, races, and attitudes, painting the portrait of two nations as well as those who no longer feel as though they belong to either one. Colonization is a key theme, returned to cleverly through well-crafted plot moments so that the primary action of the novel keeps moving forward. I liked Mallabal’s story in particular, and the attitudes he faces in the new world. And though this is a tale of history, Out of the Rabbit Hutch presents a relatable story of human hardship that all readers will find immersive and highly inspirational.