Shortly after her sixteenth birthday, Sunshine Griffith and her mother Kat move from sunny Austin, Texas, to the rain-drenched town of Ridgemont, Washington. Though Sunshine is adopted, she and her mother have always been close, sharing a special bond filled with laughter and inside jokes. But from the moment they arrive, Sunshine feels her world darken with an eeriness she cannot place. And even if Kat doesn’t recognize it, Sunshine knows that something about their new house is just ... creepy.
In the days that follow, things only get stranger. Sunshine is followed around the house by an icy breeze, phantom wind slams her bedroom door shut, and eventually, the laughter Sunshine hears on her first night evolves into sobs. She can hardly believe it, but as the spirits haunting her house become more frightening and it becomes clear that Kat is in danger Sunshine must accept what she is, pass the test before her, and save her mother from a fate worse than death.
Kindle Edition, 306 pages
Expected publication: March 24th 2015 by Weinstein Books
******** The Short of It**********
It was the word ‘adorkable’ that had me requesting this one, because the whole “Wildly popular YouTube Channel” thing went over my head and I felt like I was doing that smile and nod thing people do when they don’t want to appear clueless, but I’m very happy that I did. The Haunting of Sunshine Girl was a fun read with a well thought out storyline that had a good mix of humor and creepiness with a dash of teenage angst as well as a little young romance and characters that were well developed and just really likable.
****** The Long of It******
When Sunshine and her mother, Katherine move to Ridgemont, WA from Austin, TX for Katherine’s job, Sunshine immediately feels that something just isn’t right about the house they will be living in, but her mother doesn’t and just chalks it up to Sunshine needing time to adjust to her new surroundings. But she knows it isn’t that and soon finds herself playing checkers and Monopoly with the ghost of a young girl, witnessing inanimate objects move on their own and noticing a change in her mother that scares her. Determined to not only prove that the ghost is real, but to figure out what is going on with her mother and help her, she starts gathers as much evidence as she can with the help of her new friend Nolan and finds out that she may be more than just your average adorkable teenage girl.
I really enjoyed the writing style and pace of the story, both flowed well and I liked how the various he twists and turns were woven, not only into the main plot of the book, but into the overall story arc of the series. The POV of the story is in first person, but we get two narrators. Sunshine, whose voice I enjoyed and the one I dubbed “The Stalker”, it has changed but to say what it is now would be somewhat spoilerish, and they both work really well to keep you interested in what is currently going on and also dropping little hints of what could be coming up. There were quite a few revelations that surprised me, some that didn’t, but in the end they all made sense to me.
Sunshine herself is really what I liked the best about this story. She is the kind of sixteen year old I’d love to meet and get to know. She knows that she’s an outsider, that her interests definitely do not align with those of her age group, but it doesn’t bother her. She is who she is and she likes herself, with the exception of her hair, but she deals. She loves and genuinely likes her mother and isn’t overflowing with constant teenage angsty drama. There is some, especially as the evidence of who and what Sunshine really is starts to come to light, but it makes sense as to why she so adamantly doesn’t want to believe it to be true. Her relationship with Nolan is sweet, and adorkable in his own way and the friendship that blooms between them didn’t feel forced. There is a bit of young romance, or I should say, interest between the two, but it doesn’t go beyond that.
Overall I just really liked this one. This book is touted as YA, but I think readers of all ages can enjoy it. You have mystery, suspense, ghosts and some other paranormal beings, a budding friendship which could become more and likeable characters. There is no swearing, a little bit of blood but not a lot, and while there were a few eerie moments, I didn’t find it anymore scary that anything else out there. There is a cliffhanger ending, but the main mystery has been solved and where it ended was perfect and I am looking forward to finding out
~ I received an ARC from Weinstein Books via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review ~