This book was insanely popular in its time. It even got it's own film adaption, but apparently whoever decided to make the movie read the book and said, "I like two things about this: It has werewolves and it is terrible. Scrap all other aspects and let's make a completely different but equally horrible movie." Unfortunately, this scene never made it to the screen, as the potential love interest for both the mother and daughter is treated as more of a villain in the movie, and ends up being shot to death by Vivian instead of ... god damn it. You know what? I refuse to write the words "horny werewolf" ever again. I'm retired from both "horny" and "werewolf." It's "amorous big dog people" for me from here on out.
Falling In Love With Shapeshifting Horse Ghosts In The Awakening Of Sunshine Girl
Based on a popular YouTube series, these books follow Sunshine, a luiseach -- a person who can see surprisingly unsexy ghosts and help them move on to the afterlife. Awakening is the second book in the series, and the main plot focuses on Sunshine's long-lost father teaching her how to use her ghost powers. The romantic subplot focuses on Sunshine's crush on her friend Nolan, who is a human and not, as most teen novels would opt for, the ghost of a shapeshifting horse.
Of course, things can't be easy for Sunshine and her beau. They have to deal with a weird thing that's been going on since Book One, whereby whenever Sunshine touches him, she feels physically ill. This is apparently a real boner-killer for her. In Awakening, it's revealed that this is because her dad used his ghost magic to "limit her ability to touch anyone romantically." Just curious, was there a Sunshine Girl's Dad Curses Her Vagina subplot in the YouTube series, or this a novel exclusive? Also, it turns out that Sunshine's dad did some spooky in utero experiments on her, and that might have made her either the cause of an apocalypse or the only thing that can stop it. Pretty big coin toss there, DAD.
So Sunshine needs to be able to sacrifice her life if necessary to prevent the end of the world, and her dad thought she would never be willing to do that if she had an option to hang out with a boyfriend instead. The book is super vague on how magic works in its universe, but I like to picture a ghost punching Sunshine in the stomach every time she thinks about sex.
A Teen Is Horny For Her Uncle's (Really Old) Boyfriend In Primavera
This book manages to accomplish the difficult task of being more screwed up than its source material, the myth of Persephone, which is a classic love story that starts with a kidnapping. The myth was adapted into whatever the hell this is by Francesca Lisa Block, who was a super prolific YA novelist in the '90s. Everything she writes is really poetic and usually includes a troubled romance, but the romance is not usually between a girl and her uncle's boyfriend.
The catalyst for Primavera's journey is that she's in love with her uncle's longtime partner, Paul, who also helped raise her. She ends up leaving her family because she's so obsessed with Paul, and traveling to the city where her parents grew up. Primavera is the sequel to Ecstasia, in which we followed her parents as they escaped the same city Primavera is traveling to. But, you know, "Screw you, Mom and Dad! I can visit whatever post-apocalyptic dictatorship I want! And I'M NOT joining the football team!"
When Primavera leaves her home, I kind of hoped we were going to leave the whole Paul subplot behind, but nope! We check back in with Paul at the homestead, and he reveals that he's also attracted to Primavera. Specifically, he says: "You grew and I was amazed at your beauty. It almost frightened me at times. I didn't want you to come too near. I have never felt for women like this, but when I saw you calling up the sunflowers, I felt my heart beat as it does for Rafe [his boyfriend]."
By the way, that paragraph also begins with "When you were a baby, I almost felt as if you were my own." Thank god we're only related by my decades-long relationship with your relative, teenage girl. NOPE. NOPE. NOPE. Waiter, could you take this plotline away. There is far too much Ugh, Please, Anything But Fucking This in my soup. Primavera has an adventure and ends up returning home with a boyfriend who is suitably not her uncle's partner, thank god. But the catalyst for this whole journey is just so strange, it's always stuck with me. It's like if Harry Potter went to Hogwarts because he had to get away from his raging boner for Aunt Petunia.
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Try not to fall into passionate, sexual love with this ghost horse.
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