Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Shine, Shine, Shine - Review

Review by K.T Sullivan

Sunny and Maxon Mann are not just like everyone else. She, the daughter of a missionary father killed in Burma, was born without hair anywhere. Sunny is also dealing with her dying mother and a dark secret. How did they escape from Burma? He, the son of an abusive father, is an astronaut looking to colonize the Moon with robots. Their son, Bubber, is autistic and a baby girl is on the way. Sunny has hidden her baldness with a series of wigs and hats. After a car accident, her fake hair flies out the window and exposes her to the neighborhood. She decides to embrace the baldness. Meanwhile, Nobel Prize winning Maxon is in space with his robots. He relates to them better than most people in his life. Sunny and Maxon grew up together and have been a couple since high school. The weird girl and the misfit boy. There is an accident in space and Sunny is in premature labor. Will the star crossed lovers reunite and mend the distance, personal and physical, between them?

The robots serve as a metaphor for what’s missing between the characters. Maxon notes robots don’t show love, regret, and forgiveness. The author explores these three aspects of life. She applies the human conditions to her anything but normal couple. Their lives are shaped by their pasts and the search for acceptance. The author takes their yearnings and makes them universal. Even under the unique circumstances, readers can relate to the doubt, discovery, and hope. A worthy read.

I was born in Detroit and raised by two public school teachers. We lived in Michigan during the school year, and at an old farm in the hills of western Pennsylvania during school vacations. My world revolved around horses, music, and books. I went to college and grad school in the midwest, met my husband and got married in Chicago, and then moved to Norfolk when we decided to have kids. We have two: a boy and a girl. I homeschool them and taxi them to orchestra rehearsal, the karate dojo, the pony farm, and many music lessons. At our homeschool co-op, I teach literature and choir, and I love to travel, knit, play my electric guitar, and of course read.

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