Bunny of @theshybooks has an approachably fantastical Bookstagram that makes you feel like you could live the life of a fairy queen or lovable anti-hero if you really wanted to. Her posts typically center on the books themselves, especially their fantastical covers, which she somehow grounds in reality with the various effects she strategically places on top of an otherwise mundane photo.
Whether a cover is surrounded by butterflies, cranes, or roses, or even appearing to be carried by an illustrated crow, she manages to extend the book beyond itself and into the real world, or rather Bunny’s real world.
Wands alight at the tip, strong tentacles border delicate hands; you feel as if she’s living in the stories, sipping a warm drink in a magical realm rather than her home in North Carolina. Four to six times a week, avid readers can frequent Bunny’s page and find a new square portal to the fantastical worlds that await them, all featuring her characteristic bright red hair.
Her Bookstagram began as an outlet for her creativity five years ago, growing its following past 9,000 fellow book lovers.
One only needs to glance at Bunny’s page to realize that some of her favorite fandoms include the Shadow and Bone and Six of Crows series, given her love for the fantasy genre and the murder of crows making an appearance in more than one of her posts.
She restrained herself from listing all of her favorite books and authors but made sure to mention her all-time favorites, such as Leigh Bardugo, Naomi Novik, Amie Kaufman, Jay Kristoff, Natsuki Takaya.
She seemingly has a soft spot for Leigh Bardugo, saying she would take a selfie with her above all others if given the chance.
One of her current favorite reads – again, there are many – is The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab. While her TBR list remains long, as it does for most of us, The Wolf and the Woodsman by Ava Reid, The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi, Wicked Fox by Kat Cho, and Daughter the Siren Queen by Tricia Levenseller float to the top of the pile. If she has her way, she’ll pick up copies from her favorite bookstore, Quail Ridge Books in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Bunny stays loyal to her affinity for all things dark and magical when it comes to her fictional crushes.
“I read a lot of fantasy so almost every dark-haired prince or warrior,” Bunny said. “To name a few…Will Herondale, Kaz Brekker and Nikolai Lantsov!”
Her favorite Bookstagrammers also share a love for the woodsy, fantastical-next-door feel, but she loves each of them for a variety of reasons: @reverieandink for her aesthetic, @wherethelostboysmet for her creative shots, and @myfriendsarefiction for the creative promotion of her favorite books, often featuring costumes.
Bunny took emails from publishers and authors about featuring their books as a sign that she “made it” as a Bookstagrammer, yet the goal of her account remains rather simple.
She even delights in followers telling her they took her recommendation for a book and ended up loving it.
Despite her following and obvious love for all things bookish, Bunny admitted to lying about reading Harry Potter, for fear that the person she’s talking to will find it odd that she hasn’t read it.
“I have had people tell me I wasn’t a real reader since I haven’t read that series,” Bunny said. Whoever said that was obviously, painfully, the-sky-isn’t-blue type of wrong.
But Bunny doesn’t let the bad get in the way of the good, grateful for her account and all it has to offer others, with simple advice for aspiring Bookstagrammers.
“You don’t need a fancy camera or a lot of books. You only need passion and patience,” Bunny said. “I just want to thank my family and friends for supporting my passion for books and writing. Thank you! You guys make me feel loved.”
FEATURED IMAGE VIA @abbytenney