The Year of the Hare

The Year of the Hare

A Novel

Book - 2010
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An internationally bestselling comic novel in which a man--with the help of a bunny--suddenly realizes what's important in life

"Escapism at its best . . . Just pure fun."

"Which of us has not had that wonderfully seditious idea: to play hooky for a while from life as we know it?" With these words from his foreword, Pico Iyer puts his finger on the exhilaratingly anarchic appeal of The Year of the Hare , a novel in the bestselling tradition of Watership Down , Jonathan Livingston Seagull , and Life of Pi .

While out on assignment, a journalist hits a hare with his car. This small incident becomes life-changing: he decides to quit his job, leave his wife, sell his possessions, and spend a year wandering the wilds of Finland--with the bunny as his boon companion.

What ensues is a series of comic misadventures, as everywhere they go--whether chased up a tree by dogs, or to a formal state dinner, or in pursuit of a bear across the Finnish border with Russia--they leave mayhem (and laughter!) in their wake.
Publisher: New York : Penguin Books, 2010.
ISBN: 9780143117926
Characteristics: xi, 194 pages ; 20 cm


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Oct 24, 2019

Very different: Vertanen is a good person in a not always good environment.

Aug 01, 2019

A picaresque novel of social and political satire from Finland, first published in 1975. The relationship between Vatanen and the hare is charming, but wrenchingly at odds with the destruction of environment and other creatures along their travels. I found that the ambient/techno sound of Wilson Tanner complemented the second half of the adventure. I hope things go well for Vatanen and the hare.

Mar 12, 2016

I really enjoyed this one. A young hare acts as a catalyst for a life-changing decision to leave everything behind and "live free."

Vatanen and his hare make an adorable pair as they journey their way through many lands and shenanigans.

It gets a bit wild at the end there, but I still left it feeling pretty refreshed and happy with the whole thing.

Sep 21, 2015

After a strong start, I found this mid life crisis caper increasingly bizarre as a political satire of modern Finland takes over. It zipped along though, & there's a few laughs, so no reason to stop reading this bear, hare and man hunt.

Jul 23, 2013

"The year of the Hare," while charming and a pleasant light read, is written in such a tone that renders the content highly unbelievable and seems almost unfitting and too airy for such a wildly adventurous tale. However, Vatanen and his hare are an endearing pair, and the book is a foray into the vagabond drop-life-and-live lifestyle that we all occasionally dream about.

Apr 28, 2013

Hilarious! A bit of Oddysseus but preferable to the version by Joyce, IMHO.

Aug 10, 2012

The time I spent reading this book
is time I will never get back....

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