cover image Little Rabbit

Little Rabbit

Alyssa Songsiridej. Bloomsbury, $26 (240p) ISBN 978-1-63557-869-0

Songsiridej’s hot and sometimes heavy-handed debut tracks the relationship of an unnamed narrator, a writer, with a choreographer 20 years her senior. Though the choreographer had initially annoyed the narrator when they met at a residency (he called her “Little Rabbit” because she was “always running off to work”), she agrees to attend his dance performance. Eventually, they begin sleeping together. “Rabbit” commutes from the Boston area to visit him, either at his luxe New York City apartment or his spacious Berkshires country house. Her roommate and best friend, Annie, disapproves; Rabbit is bisexual and Annie, a lesbian, wants her to date women. But the choreographer has a wealthy ex-wife benefactor, and to pay it forward, he offers to support Rabbit’s writing career. As Rabbit gets in deeper, the relationship veers into S&M territory, and though Rabbit does not want to be the choreographer’s “little woman,” she enjoys playing a submissive role. Some of the messages about class differences and sexuality feel a bit overstated, but the progression of the relationship is subtle and intriguing, and Songsiridej pulls off sex scenes that a lesser writer could have made cringeworthy. It adds up to an addictive tale of obsessive love. (May)