Title: The Awakening of Sunshine Girl
Author: Paige McKenzie
Published: March 1st 2016
Publisher: Weinstein Books
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Horror
Length: 304 pages
Source: Paperback ARC from the author
Book Blurb (via Goodreads):
Having passed her test in Book One, Sunshine’s Luiseach powers are now fully awakened: for months now, Sunshine has felt spirits everywhere: heard voices, felt emotions – intense and sometimes overwhelming. She tries to ignore them, but it is impossible. Hoping to get her powers under control – and hoping for answers to her never-ending questions – she agrees to undergo training with her Luiseach mentor, even though she still hopes to give up her powers someday.
She and her mentor clash left and right; he doesn’t understand or approve of her attachment to the humans in her life; and she can’t understand how he could give her up so many years ago, only to endanger her mother’s life as part of a test.
Sunshine’s training is every bit as terrifying and creepy as her test was, and along the way she meets and befriends another young Luiseach, forcing her to confront her feelings for Nolan. Though her mentor is reluctant to answer her many questions, she finally learns more about her lineage, as well as the rift that threatens the future of Luiseach and the human race… and the crucial part she has to play in repairing it.
You can find my review of the first book, The Haunting of Sunshine Girl, here.
The second instalment of the Sunshine Girl series, The Awakening of Sunshine Girl picks up where the first book left off. Based on the popular YouTube series, Sunshine Girl is a thrilling paranormal ride for young adult readers with plenty of ghosts, demons, and teenage drama.
After passing her test to prove her luiseach powers, Sunshine must make the choice between trying to work through things on her own – with a little help from Nolan – or accept the help of her estranged father, who just happens to be her mentor and the orchestrator of her test. When she finds herself overwhelmed by the ghosts that are now a constant presence in her life, Sunshine reluctantly accepts Aiden’s help and suddenly finds herself far away from everything she’s come to know since her move to Washington.
I was thoroughly scared and enthralled by the first book in this series and the cliffhanger ending left me almost screaming at the book because I wanted – and needed – more. I was super excited when I saw that this book was coming out and jumped at the chance to read it as soon as possible.
The thing that I found the most interesting with this book was the new relationships that we were able to discover. The characters that were very prominent in the first book – Nolan and Kat, Sunshine’s mom – feature very little in this one, whereas her father, Aiden, features very prominently. Going from Sunshine’s strong bond with her mom in the first book to her non-existent relationship with her father was a bit strange, but it helped to build the unfamiliar feeling of everything that is going on.
Digging deeper into the history of the luiseach, and Sunshine herself, there’s some shocking revelations that were like bombs going off. Poor Sunshine takes some hits as she realises that perhaps she has a bigger part to play in what’s happening between the luiseach and demons and everything else that’s going wrong in the world right now than she had originally thought.
I love the lore that we learn in this book. Finding out how the luiseach used to work and what they were trying to accomplish made me feel really sorry that it had all gone so wrong. I wish that we were able to see what it had been like in the golden age of luiseach.
Once again, the ending had me wishing for more and I can’t believe we’re going to have to wait another year or so at least to find out what happens next. This book was like a deep breath before a storm: it was exciting and nerve-wrecking throughout but exploded at the end.
Big things are in store for the next book and I, for one, can not wait to see how things go next.
About the Author
Paige is the teen star of the hit YouTube channel The Haunting of Sunshine Girl. What began as a simple “girl and her haunted house” story has grown to a multi-webisode network with stories of zombies, ghosts, Sasquatch and lots of Sunshine! Full of positivity, humor and plenty of scares, The Haunting of Sunshine Girl has allowed Paige to spread her unique brand of adorkableness to other teens (and many adults) all over the world! At the age of 16, Paige (along with her mother, actress Mercedes Rose and producing partner, Nick Hagen) co-founded the production company Coat Tale Productions. The Weinstein Company recently optioned The Haunting of Sunshine Girl for a multi-book and screen deal. Paige lives in Portland, Oregon.
*Picture and Biography from Goodreads