The Haunting of Sunshine Girl by Paige McKenzie
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I’m not even going to lie, I read this book because I kept seeing it at Target and the cover intrigued me. I finally picked it up at the local library and gave it a try. It has the same problem I keep running into with a lot of the magical realism young adult novels I pick up- the story keeps me reading but I don’t care at all about the characters. Sunshine is very much a stock young adult heroine- frizzy haired, endearingly clumsy, and obsessed with wearing Goodwill clothing, yet somehow incredibly attractive. Nolan, the male love interest, is another stock photo whose only unique quality was that he wore his grandfather’s leather jacket. To be completely honest, I read this back to back with How to Hang a Witch (another book I initially spotted at Target) and I keep mixing up characters between the books. They’re way too boring and similar. But, also like How to Hang a Witch, I kept reading for the plot. Which, upon completion, wasn’t nearly as exciting as I’d hoped it would be. I didn’t find it very scary and I found myself predicting a lot of the plot elements. I still finished it and still enjoyed it, but it wasn’t the unique horror story that I was hoping for.
(And on a very pedantic level, it really annoyed me that the pronunciation of “luiseach” was spoken by a character specifically as “loo-seach.” It’s…it’s supposed to be from Gaelic, right? So shouldn’t it be “loo-shawk”? Right? Or was this simply a word made up by the author?)