Ain't No Sunshine
by Tiona Pathenia Brown
Reviewed by: Delonya Conyers
Ain’t No Sunshine chronicles the life of a young girl named Sunshine who is the third eldest of ten children. Sunshine’s life is far from sunny as she deals with poverty, homelessness and abuse all before the age of ten. Told in the first person the book allows readers to journey along with Sunshine as she struggles to overcome adversities that a young child should never have to face. The first person narrative also helps to personalize the story providing author Tiona Brown with an effortless way for readers to connect with Sunshine. Sunshine’s powerful voice is the perfect catalyst that helps the novel to move along at a swift pace. While the readers’ journey into Sunshine’s life may feel brief it encompasses so much that they’ll in no way feel cheated. Sunshine’s spirit and determination is clearly felt. Even when readers may not agree with her actions, they will still be able to fully understanding why she behaved in such a manner.
Author Brown has created a character so vivid in Sunshine that readers will not only sympathize for her but have empathy for her as well. The difference being that Sunshine is so well developed that readers will not only have compassion for her plight they will identify with her struggle. This ability to connect readers with her characters allows author Brown to shine above her literary peers. Clearly demonstrating that being a good novelist entails far more than just the art of telling a story, you must create a story that will leave readers feeling as if they’ve lived through it. A task author Brown clearly accomplishes within the pages of Ain’t No Sunshine.
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