Book of the Month - Sunshine
Vampires seem to be “in” these days – beginning with the Joss Whedon television series, Buffy (and its spinoff, Angel), right down to the current explosion of vampiric romances, the legendary figure of the vampire seems to have come into his/her own.
Laurel Hamilton’s series starring Anita Blake, vampire hunter, is a sexy, violent but enthralling look at a New York City where vampires, werewolves, zombies and those who hunt them are commonplace.
Christine Feehan writes vampiric romances that originate in the Carpathian Mountains. Her “dark” series is “peopled” with strange gods and wraiths and spirits as well as vampires.
But if you would like to try a “gentle” vampire romance that is romantic, adventurous, complex and unsettling at times, try Sunshine by Robin McKinley. McKinley is an award winning children’s author (The Hero and the Crown) and also writes for teens (Beauty: A Retelling of the Story of Beauty and the Beast). Sunshine is her first adult book and she succeeds beautifully at drawing us in and telling a story of tragedy and love.
Rae “Sunshine” Seddon is living in a post Voodoo-War world, earning her living making cinnamon rolls in her stepfather’s bakery. One night she is captured by rogue vampires and imprisoned, in an abandoned mansion, next to a wounded vampire, Constantine, who is also being held captive. He does not attack her, however, but convinces her to distract them both by telling stories. It is at this moment that Sunshine comes into her powers, bequeathed to her by her grandmother, but forgotten until now. She turns a pocket knife into a key and releases them both.They escape back to town, despite a dangerous dawn, and together they decide to face Constantine’s enemies, who have now sworn to destroy Sunshine as well.
Booklist calls this story “a luminous, entrancing novel with an enthralling pair of characters at its heart.” Sunshine also won the 2003 Mythopoeic Society Award for Fantasy for Adults. Meg