Excerpt from The Rabbit Factory by Marshall Karp, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Rabbit Factory

By Marshall Karp

The Rabbit Factory
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • Hardcover: Apr 2006,
    632 pages.
    Paperback: Mar 2007,
    550 pages.

    Publication Information

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt


Joanie

I closed my eyes and let it soak in. Then I read the letter again. I was about to read it for the third time when the annoying little voice that lives rent-free inside my head told me to put the fucking letter away now. I try not to argue with the voice. I extricated myself from the sagging green chair as gracefully as one can extricate 180 pounds from anything.

I walked over to Joanie's dressing table, and picked up the double-sided silver picture frame she gave me for our first anniversary. On the left side of the frame was our wedding picture with her handwritten inscription below. "To my darling Mike, We've only just begun. Love, Joanie" On the opposite side was the identical picture, but through the miracle of Photoshop, Joanie had digitally aged us fifty years. My hair was silver and thinning, but at least she gave me hair. I was thirty pounds heavier, and my face was lined with crags and crevices.

Joanie was even harder on herself, thickening out her middle, bluing her beautiful strawberry blonde hair, and adding liberal amounts of wrinkles and liver spots to her glowing skin. But she didn't change her eyes. There were crow's feet on the outside, but inside they were still the color I told her was Cavu Blue. My father flies a Piper Warrior on the weekends, and CAVU is pilot talk for a sky that has ‘Ceiling And Visibility Unlimited.' To me nothing is bluer.

"I resent the fact that you think I can't function without Rosa cleaning up after me," I said to the left side of the frame. "For your information, I was recently honored by Good Housekeeping as one of the only men on the planet who has actually mastered the art of picking up his own dirty socks and underwear. And you thought I couldn't live without you."

Andre paddled in. Andre, just for the record, is a sixyear- old black Standard French Poodle. Not the kind of dog you'd expect to be living with a cop. But this dog has instincts like Sherlock Holmes and better communication skills than a kennel full of movie Lassies.

He cocked his big curly head and gave me his most serious man-to-man look, which I clearly understood to say, "Hey, Lomax, I heard you talking, and now I see that it's just you and the picture of your dead wife. I'm starting to worry about you, pal."

I half-put the frame back down on the dressing table, then pulled it back to my lips, pressed my face to the glass, and set it back down. Andre, realizing that this was a private moment and that there was nothing edible in it for him, toddled off back to the living room.  

The phone rang. It was my partner, Terry Biggs. "Hey, Mike, we got a live one." A ‘live one' was Terry's standard lame joke for a homicide victim.

"Ask me if the vic was a man or a woman," he said. Terry is a wannabe stand-up comic, but he's never sure he's going to get the straight line, so he helps you serve it up to him. I was in no mood to resist.

"Okay, Terry, who bought it? A man or a woman?" "A rabbit," he answered, hoping to get a bigger reaction from me than I was capable of giving. "Actually a guy in a Rambo Rabbit suit. It happened out at Lamaar's Familyland."

"Familyland?" I said. "Is no place sacred?"

"I guess the scumbags are branching out. More work for you and me," Terry said. "I'll pick you up in fifteen." I hung up. The letter was still in my other hand. There was a wooden box on top of Joanie's dressing table. I had found it gift wrapped at the bottom of my shirt drawer a few days after the funeral.

A brass plaque on top was engraved Mike and Joan… till death us do part. That's where I found the letters. I put Number Six back in the box. There were still three more to be opened.

Copyright Marshall Karp 2006.  All rights reserved.  Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Macadam Cage.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!
Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    •  
    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    •  
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    •  
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    •  
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    •  
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    •  
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
    •  

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Hyde
    Hyde
    by Daniel Levine
    In Robert Louis Stevenson's 1886 novel, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, the story ends ...
  • Book Jacket: Shotgun Lovesongs
    Shotgun Lovesongs
    by Nickolas Butler
    Nickolas Butler's debut novel, Shotgun Lovesongs, follows five life-long friends, now in their mid-...
  • Book Jacket: Gemini
    Gemini
    by Carol Cassella
    How good is Gemini, Carol Cassella's book about a Seattle intensive care physician who becomes ...

First Impressions

Members read and review books ahead
of publication. See what they think
in First Impressions!

Books that
expand your
horizons.

Visitors can view a lot of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only

Find out more.

Book Discussions
Book Jacket

The Storied Life of A. J. Fikry
by Gabrielle Zevin

Published Apr. 2014

Join the discussion!

  1.  254Cartwheel:
    Jennifer duBois
  2.  170The Weight of Blood:
    Laura McHugh

All Discussions

Who Said...

A book is one of the most patient of all man's inventions.

Click Here to find out who said this, as well as discovering other famous literary quotes!

Word Play

Solve this clue:

P Your O C

and be entered to win..

Books thatinspire you.Handpicked.

Books you'll stay up all night reading; books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, books that will expand your mind and inspire you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.