Title: The Embittered Ruby
Pub Date: April 1st 2012
Author: Nicole O'DellReceived From: NetGalley
Sixteen-year-old Carmen Castillo desperately wants her parents to restore their marriage so she can return to her once-lavish life. But when her dad lets his new girlfriend turn Carmen’s bedroom in a dressing room, her last bit of faith in her parents—and in God—shatters. Her only hope is to create a family of her own with Nate (no matter that his political family finds her ethnicity distasteful). When that plan fails, Carmen packs up her resentment and anger and heads to Diamond Estates, seeking healing for her embittered soul. Concluding there is no such thing as ruby slippers, Carmen wonders if she’ll ever find the happiness and wholeness her heart longs for.
Once upon a time I was a teenager, it hasn't been so long ago that I forgot some of those feelings. Like Carmen I was a child of divorce, my life changed at that moment as did the life of Carmen. Loosing the things that you know as your life, your home, family, school and for Carmen. Tennis can make it difficult to see clearly. Those losses are what drove Carmen to the first mistake she made. It is not surprising that this first mistake lead her on a pretty typical path of one thing to the next compounded until it spiraled out of control.
I was intrigued by the Manliness of a young Nate. Who stood up in some tough situations and was willing to not only make things work but forgive when necessary! When Carmen finally makes the decision to make things better I saw a peace in her I wasn't even expecting. The author helped the character go beyond a 180 turn of attitude. I was pleasantly surprised by this. I found the "realness" of each of the teenage characters so very refreshing and enjoyed learning about their lives! Once I finished this book I found out it was a series, I cannot wait to read the first book "The Wishing Pearl" and I'll be waiting quite impatiently for the next one as well!