#2: The Embittered Ruby
Wonderful Second Book to the Diamond Estates Serie
Carmen Castillo devises the ultimate plan to escape the horrors of poverty and root herself in high-class society once again. Except her plan, devised of treachery, deceit, and dishonesty, turns inside out. Instead of high-class, she ends up in high trouble. Diamond Estates and the girls who live there are willing to teach Carmen the value of honesty and integrity, two concepts foreign to this Jersey girl. Now Carmen must decide to learn the lessons her housemates offer or lose everything she loves.
Ms. O'Dell writes another wonderful story of truth and real-life drama. Carmen and her cast of characters are believable and loveable. I found myself rooting for even the nemesis to sidle up to the good side. The Embittered Ruby is a delightful read that's entertaining and challenging. You'll walk away looking at people a little differently once you've read this story.
I received this book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 [...] "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
September 4, 2012
Can a manipulative teen change her life?
Carmen Castillo, forced to leave her wealthy fatherÃ¢ÂÂs New York home when her divorce, detests Hackensack, New Jersey, and the impoverished neighborhood she now shares with her mother and younger sisters. Her scheme to hold onto her rich boyfriend, Nate, backfires, she is kidnapped by a gang, and she eventually ends up at Diamond Estates, a ministry for troubled girls.
Hardened by all her negative experiences and the way sheÃ¢ÂÂs used others, Carmen doubts God holds the answers she seeks. Her attempts to rule her own life or to fix things have not worked out. She finally faces herself and doesnÃ¢ÂÂt like what she sees, but eventually discovers how to become free of all thatÃ¢ÂÂs bound her.
This second book in the Diamond Estates series for teens shares a story youth can relate to as they accompany Carmen on her journey from bitter to better. This novel addresses prejudice, relationships, choices, the longing to belong, and the craving for contentment. This book is a story on its own, but contains some of the same characters as book one, The Wishing Pearl, which I also recommend.
June 30, 2012
So powerful it gave give me chills
Review by Jill Williamson
Carmen CastilloÃ¢ÂÂs live is falling apart. Her parents have gotten a divorce, which meant she had to move to s new school in New Jersey, far away from her boyfriend in New York, the country club where she plays tennis, and her beautiful home. New Jersey is gross. Their new apartment is in a seedy part of town, and on the first day of school, she gets hit on my the head of a dangerous gang. Carmen just wants out. But her desperation leads her to deceive everyone she knows.
Nicole OÃ¢ÂÂDell writes honest, gut-wrenching books about real life. They are just so powerful they give me chills. I could totally follow CarmenÃ¢ÂÂs logic, being raised the way she was. My heart grieved for Carmen and her boyfriend Nate. But Nicole always takes readers on a journey through the eyes of her characters, and CarmenÃ¢ÂÂs journey was beautiful. I loved it. These are amazing books for teen girls. I highly recommend them.
May 11, 2012
An interesting book for teens
I do not read a lot of young adult books but I was glad I had the opportunity to read this one. The story centers on a sixteen year old girl named Carmen. She is going through family drama and this book takes you along on her journey.
I found the story to be realistic. I thought the descriptions of the main charactersÃ¢ÂÂ emotions were well written. You follow the character as she justifies doing things that she knows are wrong. You really get to know her and understand why she does what she does. I did feel like it took you on this long journey that ended abruptly though. The ending is not as good as the rest of the book. That said, I still enjoyed the story and gave this book 4/5 stars.
I would like to thank NetGalley and the publisher for the copy of this book I enjoyed reading. I gave an honest review based on my opinion of what I read.
April 23, 2012