By Terry Miles
Author: Terry Miles
- ISBN: 9781529016963
- Published: June 2021
- Pages: 419
- Format reviewed: Paperback
- Review date: 15/06/2021
- Language: English
Are you playing the game? Made you look. The idea of a metagame that embroils a hero is not a new one, but it is hard to pull off. The amount of financial resources and secrecy that is required to convince Michael Douglas to jump off a building is beyond what the average person can afford, unless you own Amazon or something. The reason that Escape Rooms are held within a confined space is that you can manage the environment, no one can manage the entire world. Or can they?
K has the ability to see patterns in everyday things. This makes him great at visual puzzles, but not so great at conversation. Over the years he has surrounded himself with likeminded friends who are all interested in the clandestine game, Rabbits. This is a worldwide competition that exists all around us. Ever iteration ends in someone winning their heart’s desire, but several deaths. The 11th game is about to start, and something is not right. A dangerous undertaking has just become too deadly as numerous players are dying and disappearing, Can K fix the game before it kills him too?
Rabbits was never going to be a book that was a gentle read as the concept of real-world games are always full of intrigue, twists and turns. Terry Miles goes even further than this and adds the potential for science fiction. Where the real and the unreal starts to blur. Are what K experiences all part of the game or supernatural? To add to the soup is that K has had visions in the past. Can the reader even trust the protagonist?
The concepts that are thrown out in Rabbits are confusing if you do not concentrate on what you are reading. On more than one occasion I had to re-read a paragraph or two to try and get my head around metaphysical concepts. You can enjoy the book just for the ride but understanding all the possible reasons what the Game is acting so strangely really adds to the experience of the book.
Rabbits has been likened to Ready Player One and it does have some similar touchstones – the larger game and the cultural references. They both seem to exist in worlds in which geeky people are cool. I like geeks (I am one), but I don’t really know many cool ones! The book references some sources that are very in keeping with its style. Donnie Darko makes an appearance, but I would cut deeper and suggest that Richard Kelly’s The Box is even closely related.
The way to get the most from the book is to submerge yourself in it as much as you can. The book is a spinoff of Mile’s own Rabbits podcast, there are so many layers within and without the book that can be explored. A casual reader may find themselves a little confused by proceeding as there is a lot of concepts to absorb, and they come from different genres. It is hard to follow a book when you are unable to trust what you are reading. Those readers accustomed to complex science and metaphysical musings will find a hefty puzzle to enjoy and test themselves with.
Written on 15th June 2021 by Sam Tyler .