Struggling to find a place to be as a human girl, Sunset starts investigating magic with the hopes of finding something that defines her and being useful to her friends.
This book starts just after the events of the Rainbow Rocks movie. It also has the first original plot of the Equestria Girls books. Written by Perdita Finn.
My Little Pony: Equestria Girls: Sunset Shimmer's Time to Shine provides the following examples:
- Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!:
- After Sunset gives Rainbow Dash a wrist device that functions similarly to a smartwatch (tracks everything going on in her body, vibrates, makes noises, etc.), she gets frequently gets distracted looking at it.
- Surprisingly averted with Pinkie (of all characters), who manages to keep concentrating on her exam instead of looking through the window.
- Desperately Looking for a Purpose in Life: Sunset starts to struggle with this, as she notices how all her friends have something that defines them.
- Early-Installment Weirdness:
- Sunset Shimmer and friends are referred to as the "Rainbooms". Later novels refer to them (and Human Twilight) as "The Equestria Girls".
- Through the story, Sunset talks to Twilight for help with the magic book a lot. In later novels, she does this very rarely.
- While it's not a novelization or tie-in of Rainbow Rocks, the book uses a lot of the movie in its plot. Later original novels don't have a strong relation to the movies, especially ones that were released around the time of their publishing.
- Intelligence Equals Isolation: Zig-Zagged. It's established that Sunset needs to do more social activities instead of merely focusing on studying and, other than the Equestria Girls, she is actively avoided due to her not doing any effort to clean her image.
- It Was with You All Along: The magic Twilight was talking to Sunset about was the latter's friendship with the Equestria Girls all along.
- Magic Music: Like Rainbow Rocks, Sunset and friends release magic and pony-up through doing and practicing music.
- The Magic Was Inside You All Along: Twilight convinces Sunset that her friends all have magic, so Sunset believes that magic is the reason for things to go really well for them. However, it turns out they were really special on their own, and friendship was the magic all along.
- Super-Intelligence: Sunset, of the "super learning and eidetic memory" kind.