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Ray toothing

Robin McKinley’s Sunshine is much like a Laurell Hamilton book, except that it’s suitable for people with good taste. The territory is familiar: more or less modern day, except there are creepy-crawlies (including vampires) running around and everybody knows it. Sunshine is set right after the war that occurred when that particular fact became public knowledge, I think — the timing is never made clear. There’s a young spunky heroine, there’s a vampire, there’s romance (not necessarily with the vampire), and so on.

The good: the prose is solid and Sunshine, the eponymous protagonist, is a fairly good character. Also good: the background doesn’t get drawn into place with a straight-edge. You have to pick up on what happened by paying attention, and I like a book that makes me think a bit.

The bad: weakish plotting in which characters don’t have to make choices. Inchoate ending, somewhat anticlimactic. It feels as though McKinley came up with an awesome setting concept and then wrote a documentary about it.

I liked it. The good is pretty good and the bad is forgivable.

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