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Summary

England, 2020. 

There are 1.2 million human-sized rabbits living in the UK. 

They can walk, talk and drive cars, the result of an Inexplicable Anthropomorphising Event 55 years ago. 

And a family of rabbits is about to move into Much Hemlock, a cosy little village where life revolves around summer fetes, jam-making, gossipy corner stores and the oh-so-important Best Kept Village awards.

No sooner have the rabbits arrived than the villagers decide they must depart. But Mrs Constance Rabbit is made of sterner stuff and her family are behind her. Unusually, so are their neighbours, long-time residents Peter Knox and his daughter Pippa, who soon find that you can be a friend to rabbits or humans, but not both.

With a blossoming romance, acute cultural differences, enforced rehoming to a MegaWarren in Wales and the full power of the ruling United Kingdom Anti Rabbit Party against them, Peter and Pippa are about to question everything they'd ever thought about their friends, their nation and their species.

It'll take a rabbit to teach a human humanity....

©2020 Jasper Fforde (P)2020 Hodder & Stoughton Limited

What listeners say about The Constant Rabbit

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My favourite book of 2020

I absolutely loved this, perfect blend of absurd and surreal with moments of absolute believability.
The narration was excellent, really well done.
The story itself was an absolute delight, so many highlights, I won't forget this one for a long while.
It's well worth a credit and even if it doesn't sound like your usual type of book, it's definitely worth taking a risk on.
*I'd tried another Jasper Fforde book before, one of the Thursday books, I really didn't get on with it so I dismissed all his other work until this one got me with the unusual synopsis and the very first review that was put up, I'm now going to go back and try some of his others hoping it'll be as good as this*
The first review said it was like Animal farm.....I was intrigued.

9 people found this helpful

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Fantastic

Loved the narrator and the story was original and ace! Thank you so much xxxx

5 people found this helpful

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Wonderful as ever

Entertaining, informative, funny and gentle - a thoroughly great listen, with some good guffawing moments x

5 people found this helpful

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Charming Story Touching and Full of Twists

I loved this book so much that I was sad to finish it and have to leave that world. It defys categorisation - it is a social commentary on racism and middle class England, a comedy, fantasy, speculative and a sort of political fairy tail.

The world building has given me many ideas to consider and the the story is full of unexpected twists.

The narrator was skilled at doing all the different accents. I could picture the main character in my head as I listened.

The first chapter has a different tone from the rest so bare through the first 10 mins and you will be hooked.

4 people found this helpful

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sublimely brilliant

I love everything that Jasper Fforde has written and I couldn't wait to hear this new one. I was not disappointed. It was as satirical as always but the topic chosen this time could not have been anymore relevant.

The only strange thing was having Adam from the Archers reading to me. it took a while to get used to but he was very good.

4 people found this helpful

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Bunny bonkers.


It pains me to write a poor review, especially after reading such great reviews and the summary looked promising.

Personally I just could not get into this book, the narrator Andrew Wincott reads with such a smug self righteous satisfaction that just listening to him takes over from what is actually happening in the book.

As to the story I just lost all threads and feel rather bereft as I was so looking forward to this.

Sorry but it’s going back to the warren.

2 people found this helpful

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I didn't find this as exciting as his other books

I had trouble with this book, I adore all Jasper's books, but this one I found slow and if I'm honest a bit boring. I also didn't really like the ending it kind of felt unresolved.
Unusual for his books to not be exciting all the way through.

Wouldn't listen to this one again I'm afraid.

2 people found this helpful

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A Fforde too far

Story has too many parallels to today's reality and thinly disguised references to current politics to be enjoyed without seeing it at least in part as a rather direct allegory for race and immigration politics in the UK, aimed at highlighting some current problems and the thought processes behind them. There are several slightly meta references to this in the book itself, so don't think there's much doubt that Jasper intended the reader to. Perhaps the funniest parallel is the prime minister character, who is called Nigel and the voice actor just happens to use a similar accent to Nigel Farage.

Unfortunately the allegory while obvious also doesn't fit very well, and this really detracts from the entertainment value and immersion. It makes racism an issue of old fashioned 'don't want them in MY village' with added legal murder, and makes the victims an actual different species who have significant inherent differences to the human beings. It also introduces an uncomfortable feminist eugenics conspiracy! If you can get past this then there are some good points to think about and it is an entertaining story.

The main character is an antihero really, being quite cowardly and mainly reacting to events rather than driving them. This is done in a way that makes him feel quite realistic and easy to identify with though, so think it's more an interesting writing choice rather than a negative.

Fforde's humour and entertaining writing style are still there, it's just a lot harder to enjoy them when you're always unavoidably reading the story across to real life as an allegory which doesn't really work.

2 people found this helpful

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The best Fforde novel

I absolutely loved The Constant Rabbit. Stellar story matched with excellent narration by Andrew Wincott. I don’t know how Jasper Fforde comes up with such genius notions and delivers them with great wit, smarts and tenderness but I am thankful he does.

2 people found this helpful

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More than I thought it would be

I loved this, it's obviously full of Jasper Fforde weirdness that you come to hope for and expect from one of his novels, but I wasn't expecting the discussion on human ways of doing things and actions and I came out of listening to it feeling thoughtful. I think this is the novel that we all need to hear this year!
Narration is good, lots of different accents

1 person found this helpful

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  • Sharon
  • 07-05-21

I just didn't think this was funny or good

The author has obviously read the UKIP (far right political party in Britain) handbook and certain newspaper comments section and written a thinly disguised book about it.

I was really in the mood for some gentle British humour. It is so gentle it passed me by completely, like a Summer zephyr. The author tried really hard to be funny and surrealist. But his mind (if you can judge from one book) is just not arranged that way.

I also found one particular moment in the book completely jarring. I can't say what it is, because someone else may have the misfortune of picking up this book, but it involves creating an entirely new group of characters midway into the book. This was such an obvious device and I find that just awful.

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  • Naama
  • 05-10-20

Another great book from Jasper Fforde

Funny, charming and expertly done satire. This book is less "crazy" than all his other books, there is only one wild idea, but i loved it just the same.