Read The Wishing Pearl by Nicole O'Dell Online

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Join conflicted sixteen-year-old Olivia Mansfield on her journey to hope and healing as she leaves her messed-up life behind and moves into Diamond Estates, a home for troubled teens. This brand-new novel for teen girls will not only entertain, but also promises to capture your heart and challenge your faith....

Title : The Wishing Pearl
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781616264543
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 368 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

The Wishing Pearl Reviews

  • Dawn Teresa
    2019-04-17 17:08

    Also published on my blog, Read Love.I won a copy of this book through a Goodreads First Reads giveaway. And one day, not long after receiving the email notification from Goodreads, I received a package from Amazon. The author, Nicole O'Dell, had bought me a copy of her book! How cool is that? I've never received a giveaway book so quickly before! I was really impressed and grateful.The Wishing Pearl is the first in a planned series of Diamond Estates novels. Diamond Estates is a Christian outreach center, a residential treatment facility for troubled teens. In book one, we meet Olivia Mansfield, whom O'Dell manages to introduce to us in a way in which we can immediately sympathize with her. The opening scene has her playing her oboe: "The oboe understood her. It sang her somber song. Melancholy and forlorn...Perfect words to describe its cry and Olivia." Right away, you want to learn about Olivia and her sadness. And you find she is a nice girl. She's not a bad girl, but she is losing her way -- she starts to make poor choices. As Olivia navigates these choices, the author expertly shows her thought process, which is legitimately and believably one of a sixteen-year-old girl. Eventually, Olivia's life becomes unmanageable, and she reaches a breaking point which ultimately takes her to Diamond Estates. Her flight begins more as running away from danger in fear than running toward God or rescue, but Olivia is able to learn to trust in God and regain the faith that she had lost as a child. This book chronicles her journey.Rather than go into the plot in-depth, I'm going to touch on some aspects I particularly enjoyed. First, Olivia's relationship with her brother Jake who is deaf. He and Olivia have a very special relationship. The novel uses their relationship, as well as another deaf character, to show compassion and empathy toward people who are different. Second, there are humorous moments that help keep the book and its serious topics from feeling too heavy. Third, I enjoyed getting to know Olivia's three roommates. The girls' group dynamic is very well done. And although there is an occasional weighty one-on-one discussion, the lighthearted moments show the girls as friends and family. This character-centered aspect helps keep the novel from feeling like an Afterschool Special. Finally, I liked that the mean girl -- yes, every book has one -- is served a portion of grace rather than revenge. This is definitely an idea worth exploring in teen literature!Where the novel shines is in its portrayal of thoughts and feelings that seem like they are coming from a real teen. Nicole O'Dell does an exceptional job giving voice to all the feelings of doubt, shame, inadequacy, fear, etc., that a teen -- especially a girl -- can feel. For teens who are faced with tough situations that give rise to hard questions, fear, and discouragement, the novel provides guidance and hope. At one point, Olivia is encouraged to "fight the lies". The explanation that follows this advice, touching on what those lies are, is a terrific lesson that people of all ages can benefit from. Curious? Read the book!I really enjoyed The Wishing Pearl and would highly recommend it! I look forward to reading the next installment, The Embittered Ruby, when it comes out next April.

  • Hallie Updegrave
    2019-04-06 18:48

    This book is really amazing! It made me feel like I should be more entouch with God! Because of this book I decided to try and go back to church!

  • Louise
    2019-03-31 18:00

    Story Description:Sixteen-year-old Olivia Mansfield dreams of a land far, far away. . .A land far away from her stepfather’s abuse and torment. A land far away from her mother’s blind eye. A land far away from the haunting memories of her past. But then reality sets in, and Olivia knows she must make the best of her dire situation—at least until her high-school graduation. But when poor choices lead Olivia to the brink of a complete breakdown and she finds herself dealing with the unexpected death of her best friend, she comes to a crossroads. Will Olivia find the path to ultimate hope and healing that her heart longs for? Or will the demons from her past prove too much to bear?My Review:Olivia Mansfield played the Oboe in the high school band and was in Grade 10. She lives with her mother and second husband, Chuck, who was abusive with Olivia, and her older brother Jake who is deaf. Chuck hated Olivia as much as Olivia hated Chuck. Unfortunately, Mom had her head in the sand and anytime Olivia attempted to talk with her Mom about Chuck, she either changed the conversation or tore a strip off Olivia for even thinking about saying anything derogatory about Chuck who had “given her everything she ever wanted” according to her mother.At one point, Olivia’s Mom went away for two days leaving her alone in the house with Chuck. No way did Olivia even want to think about that so she called her new friend Jordyn and asked her to come over. Jordyn was in trouble with her parents and only allowed to stay until ten o’clock which Olivia figured was better than no Jordyn at all.When Jordyn drove up a few minutes later, she had a 6-pack of beer with her. Olivia had never drank before and wasn’t happy about it. Fearing she’d lose her new friend she reluctantly sipped on one beer. By ten o’clock Jordyn had drunk the other 5 beers and she was plainly plastered! Olivia wanted her to take a taxi home but Jordyn was afraid how she’d explain that to her parents. So, off she went, keys in hand to drive home and Olivia let her go!A few minutes after she left, Charles came to Olivia’s room and demanded she unlock her door and let him in. Olivia did NOT want to do that but she had no choice. So, she “…sent her mind and heart fluttering out the window to a far-off land while her body crept to the door. She slowly unlocked the fate she’d been living for years.” Not being believed by her own mother led Olivia to become ‘numb’ to everything. To live dangerously because being good all the time wasn’t getting her anywhere. She called Jordyn and went to a party at a friend’s house. Soon Olivia was chugging beer and smoking cigarettes. After stumbling and dropping her beer glass, a hand reaches out to catch her and when Olivia regains her footing and looks up she realizes she is staring into Jake’s face. Jake is totally angry, grabs the cigarette out of Olivia’s hand and stomps it into the ground. Olivia tells Jake he shouldn’t care about what she is doing because she is sixteen-years-old. This behaviour continues until Olivia ultimately ends up at Diamond Estates where counsellors work with teenagers who are out of control. To cover up the pain she has suffered in her life, and Olivia has dealt with a lot more than just Charles, she embarks on a new journey to find herself and God.I was so totally lost in this story that I just couldn’t stop reading! The characters were so well developed, the story so well written, the ups and downs and twists and turns were phenomenal. The writing was so descriptive that I could picture clearly in my mind’s eye, Diamond Estate perfectly. I was so engrossed in each of the girl’s stories and friendships that I felt like I was living on a cot in the room the four girls shared together. I felt that close to them. Although this was originally written as a young adult novel, it is also great reading for any age. At 368 pages it only took me a few hours to buzz through it because it was that good!!! Be sure to pick up a copy as this is one story you won’t forget.***Preview courtesy of Netgalley***

  • Rachelle Cobb
    2019-04-24 14:42

    Sixteen-year-old Olivia Mansfield dreams of a land far, far away...A land far away from her stepfather's abuse and torment.A land far away from her mother's blind eye.A land far away from the haunting memories of her past.But then reality sets in, and Olivia knows she must make the best of her dire situation--at least until her high school graduation. But when poor choices lead Olivia to the brink of a complete breakdown and she finds herself dealing with the unexpected death of her best friend, she comes to a crossroads.Will Olivia find the path to ultimate hope and healing that her heart longs for? Or will the demons from her past prove too much to bear?What I LovedOlivia's story starts out rocky but riveting. I was immediately drawn into her mind and her hurting heart. The first three chapters were the hardest to read, though Nicole O'Dell deals with a hard situation with grace.Then a series of tough choices sets Olivia into a whirlwind that takes her life from bad to worse. Rays of hope shine in when she gets the chance to make a fresh start and starts to seek God.In one of the most intricately-woven YA novels I've ever read, right and wrong battle in the mind and heart of a pained young woman who wants only one thing: peace, love, hope. The Wishing Pearl is a beautiful story about finding the path to healing.What I Didn't Like As MuchThis book was hard to read at times. As I realized the dire straits in which Olivia lived, I found it difficult to turn the page--afraid what I would find. But the author handles the darkness very well. And lets in the light in the most subtle, startling, significant ways. Why I Recommend This BookThe Wishing Pearl is lovingly crafted and seemed so real. Olivia's voice pierces the pages and is true to the very end. The ending is lovely and almost had me in tears as God's love and truth triumph in the most unexpected of ways. Truly a story worth reading.

  • Barbara Ell
    2019-04-25 22:01

    I received this as a Goodreads First Read.Trying to find some sort of control on her life, Olivia begins to make some poor choices, turning to cigarettes, alcohol, and marijuana. Although she never truly hit rock bottom, she did discover the need to change from that path.While some parts of the story made one think "it really doesn't work that way," it is understandable why the author used creative license. Towards the beginning of the book there were a few instances of typos & grammatical errors and for the most part didn't detract from the story, and I was able to forget them as I continued into the story. There was also a character in the book, Donna, whose character was never developed. People talked about her, and she may have thrown out a line or two, but suddenly she was involved in the future of Olivia. She voiced her complaints/concerns with nothing to support why she felt the way she did, the reader is left trying to figure out why she would say what she did. Then she vanished and doesn't make another appearance in the book until the very end, where she is mentioned in the audience.It is a good book which allows teens to realize that they are never really alone. The story also shows that trust is hard, whether you are a troubled teen or on the straight and narrow path.

  • Gina
    2019-04-22 17:03

    Last month I reviewed The Embittered Ruby, which is book 2 in the Diamond Estates series, if you recall I was really taken with it so I had to go back and read book 1. Quite honestly I am glad I hadn't found this before because it would have made the wait for book 2 so much harder! This is one honest, and raw book. I love the main character Olivia and I so understand what she is going through at home. Details about her fathers death and her home life lead her on a path of destruction. Reading this book now as a parent I really understand how important the lines of communication with our kids are!Olivia lives with her mother and her for lack of a better term monster of a step father. She makes some choices in her life that lead up to a tragedy, and thankfully she turns that tragedy into so many great things by taking that all important first step in bettering her life and turning it over to God. We are introduced to some of the teens at Diamond Estates and pay close attention because you may see them again! I just found myself so wrapped up in Olivia and pulling for her that I couldn't put this book down. Now if only I can keep myself busy until Dec 1st when the third and final book, Shadowed Onyx comes out!

  • Lauren Wiseman
    2019-03-26 21:40

    (I received this book from Clash Entertainment from a giveaway)I don't know what it is, but I guess I came into this expecting a fluffy novel with especially cheesy redemption. BOY, was I wrong! I stayed up *two* nights in a row to finish this exceptional book. Nicole O'Dell is not cheesy in her writing, at all. I loved it. It felt real. I really cared about these characters and thought O'Dell did a wonderful job creating them.It's a page turner. She kept ending chapters with cliff-hangers!Recommended for: Teen girls 14+ (Some content is not suitable for younger girls; though not explicit, there's mentioning of molestation and prostitution; drug use, smoking, teen drinking. However, it is dealt with in a mature way)

  • Tarissa
    2019-04-24 18:45

    This is usually NOT the kind of book I read---a troubled teenage girl (completely rich and spoiled), who deals with smoking, drinking, abuse, etc. I only did read it because of a friend's suggestion, and because I knew that the story has a Christian influence.It was great. Not my favorite book, but I'm glad that I've read it. No, I didn't enjoy everything in it and all the subject matter that I had to trudge through, but the ending is wonderful. By the time you finish, you've been on a life-changing journey with young Olivia. How to find God plays a big part of the story---and that's why I do rather like the book.Recommended for mature teenage girls and young adults especially.

  • Gillian Bronte Adams
    2019-04-25 22:52

    In The Wishing Pearl, Nicole weaves a sweet story of one girl’s struggles to break free of her past. I’m not usually a fan of modern girl’s books (I prefer fantasy and plenty of action) and I’m generally somewhat squeamish about certain difficult topics. But although this book deals with some tough stuff – teen drinking, drug use, child abuse, etc – Nicole handled it extremely tactfully. The story was anything but boring and I really enjoyed it!The book kept my attention all the way through. Olivia’s struggles and doubts were all believable. I was rooting for Olivia and her friends the whole time! In the story, Diamond Estates is a home for “troubled girls” where the staff helps the girls work through the issues that they’re facing – physical, mental, and spiritual. I enjoyed reading about Diamond Estates. Even though it was a fictional place, reading about it was enough to make me wish I could work at a place like it someday. I work at a Christian youth camp during the summer and each year we host an Angel Tree Week where children who have at least one parent in prison are able to come to camp! It’s just about the toughest week there is to work, but it’s the most rewarding! I love working Angel Tree and seeing the impact that it has on the kids. It’s a chance for them to come and play in a safe environment, to hear the word of God, and have folks loving them at all times. These kids have been hurt and so they set up some pretty strong barriers that take a while to break through – and you can’t always break through – but when you do, it’s just amazing! You realize that the staff working at camp weren’t the really ones who broke through – it was the love of God. In some ways, reading about Diamond Estates reminded me of working Angel Tree Week. The staff were so dedicated to loving and helping the girls, and so focused on the spiritual aspect of the girl’s healing because they knew that ultimately, the only one who could truly help was Christ. All in all, I really enjoyed The Wishing Pearl and found it a captivating and sweet – though at times almost heartbreaking – story. I will definitely pick up more of Nicole’s books in the future and look forward to reading more in the Diamond Estates series. Because of some of the difficult subject material, I recommend it for ages 13+ but I give it a 5 stars!

  • Jill Williamson
    2019-03-31 14:45

    Olivia Mansfield has everything a girl could want. She lives in a mansion, has a rich stepfather, a mother who spoils her, and a wonderful big brother. But it’s all a mirage. Her stepfather’s abuse, her mother’s indifference, and nightmares of her real father’s death make Olivia’s live something she wants to get away from. So when her friend introduces Olivia to the party scene, Olivia is only too happy to indulge in this means of escape. But one too many parties and the death of her friend lead Olivia to a girls’ home called Diamond Estates, her last hope at getting her life on track before she loses it.Talk about your coming of age novel! Wow. This book sucked me in and didn’t let go. And when it was done, I was sad. I wanted to keep reading about Olivia’s life, all the way until she was a grandmother. Alas, the book stopped WAY before then. Ah well, it was worth it. Olivia’s story and her journey to find herself enthralled me. I was rooting for the truth to be revealed every step of the way. This is a wonderful book for young girls. I can’t wait to read the next one in the series!

  • Bill Tillman
    2019-04-25 18:49

    This book truly reflects those tough questioning times you go through on the way to becoming a follower of Christ.

  • Samantha Padisak
    2019-04-16 16:53

    Olivia Mansfield has everything a girl could want. She lives in a mansion, has a rich stepfather, a mother who spoils her, and a wonderful big brother. Her stepfather’s abuse, her mother’s indifference, and nightmares of her real father’s death make Olivia’s live something she wants to get away from. When Olivia’s friend introduces Olivia to a party scene, Olivia uses the party scene to escape her real life. When Olivia went to too many parties she got too wrapped up in all the party life her friend died. All this lead up to Olivia going to a girl’s home called Diamond Estates, hopping to get her life on track before she looses it. Nicole O’Dell has a wonderful way incorporating the per pressure through a teenage girls life. This story grabbed my attention from the very beginning and kept through all the way until it ended. I’m not very sentimental through books or movies but this story seamed to make me cry. This book certainly kept me kept me guessing. The author seems to know how to use the daily struggles in real life and put it into a book. My favorite part of the book would probably have to be when Olivia realizes she wants her life to be normal again, and that she indeed needed someone’s help through her journey throughout her faith. I would say that this book would be for girls thirteen and older. If you like to read books about contemporary teenage girls life’s ou should definitely read this book.

  • J.C.
    2019-04-01 21:09

    Wow. I just finished this book for the second time, and it was amazing! The characters are so vividly drawn, you feel like you know them, and it makes you happy to have such a long book with them. Rather than just a scene, you have over 300 pages—months and months in the storyline—with the characters that you come to love. ***MILD SPOILERS***This series as a whole is a very mature set of books; it covers topics such as teen pregnancy in a later book, but they are incredibly clean, wholesome, and appropriate, not to mention totally Christian books (which I am incredibly grateful for). This book focuses on sixteen-year-old Olivia Mansfield. Her father died in a car accident years ago, and ever since she’s been dealing with her stepfather’s horrid abuse. When it becomes too much, she turns to smoking, alcohol, etc. Only when her so-called best friend, Jordyn, dies in a car accident does she start to see the truth of the horrible life she’s been living. When offered a place at Diamond Estates, a place for troubled girls to come find healing in Christ, she accepts, and the path to recovery begins.I loved so many things about this book. Besides the characters being amazing in every sense, I also loved the setting the author chose. Diamond Estates is painted so beautifully, with its mission being so incredible, that you just want to just believe it exists in real life. I loved how the author wrote in Ben and Alicia’s characters as the guys to look to when you need help, but also the fun leaders, wanting ultimately the best for the girls there. I loved the way the Christian message was so clear in the narrative perspective, but Olivia still takes some convincing. Some people find this kind of stuff cheesy, but I found this book realistic and believable. Olivia was such a fun character, easy to love, easy to relate to, easy to think she actually exists. The book is written in third person, but we enter Olivia’s mind so much that I often forgot and thought it was from first person! You really find yourself understanding Olivia after just a few chapters and while you want to shout at her, “No! Why are you doing that? Don’t do that!” you also, at the same time, understand her thought process behind it—which makes the Diamond Estates section of the book so much more amazing, especially when Olivia turns her life around. You feel you can connect with her so well—when she’s worried, you’re worried. She’s scared, your heart starts racing. She’s happy, you smile.I loved Ju-Ju, Skye, and Tricia, Olivia’s roommates, as well; they were painted just perfectly: your average fun-loving teenagers, great friends, and such fun personalities that you don’t even want to know why they’re at Diamond Estates. The four of them just slid together as friends, and you can’t help but cheer on their friendship.The ending was phenomenal, too. I loved the way it all played out, and the way it just all fit together perfectly once Olivia just let go and trusted God. Though generally I’m not a fan of teenage romance, the little bit of love that creeps between Olivia and Justin is clean, wholesome, and easy to encourage, especially once the ending arrives. The difference between this kind of love and the romance you see in novels today is that this isn’t the kind of kissing-every-minute, somewhat-inappropriate romance. It’s just simply there, in the background, a bit of attraction, and as you get to know Justin’s character, you just know they are truly in love, not just random love that might not last. (Pss—you’ll see more of Olivia and Justin in the second and third books.)Anyway, to sum it up, an amazing, incredible book by an extremely talented author. One of my all-time favorites and I’d recommend it for ages 13 & up.Like my reviews? Follow my blog:http://beyondtheamethyst.blogspot.com

  • Rachel
    2019-03-29 20:51

    Storyline - Missing her father, terrified and hating her abusive step-father, and angry with her mother, Olivia dreams of when she can leave home to attend a prestigious music school. Because of her rotten life, she can't understand why she plays the good girl and begins to rebell with smoking, alcohol, and soon drugs. But when her best friend dies, she is left with a choice about her own life. Choosing to do something, she goes to Diamond Estates, a school for troubled teen girls, to change her life around. But things are just beginning for her and she is pretty sure she will not find God here. No matter that others are saying she will.Personal Opinion - I believed this book and the characters so much. Even though I have never met anyone like these girls or lived in their situations, from what I hear about the world, their situations, choices, and feelings are not off at all. I thought Olivia got out of the cigarettes and alcohol to quickly for how long she had been in it before going to Diamond Estates but I think that is probably my biggest complaint. The romance story was well handled and the friendships that were made were awesome (I loved those girls and felt for them). As a side note, I loved how there were deaf characters in the book. I am partial to the language (by the way, the description of the signs were correct for the ones I knew, which was must) and think deaf culture needs to be represented in more in literature. As a sum up, wonderful book and talented author. But I still think that the guy running the program should not be the one setting the schedule for girls. Half hour to wake up and put on make up? I don't do make up and I still need more than half an hour. Just saying.Disclaimer - In exchange for an honest review, I received this book for free from Team Novel Teen. Team Novel Teen is a group of bloggers dedicated to spreading the word about clean teen fiction. Check out other posts about The Wishing Pearl by Nicole O'Dell by clicking on the links above, and check out http://www.jillwilliamson.com/ for more information about Team Novel Teen.

  • Terri Harr
    2019-04-17 21:45

    This is not the first book I have read from this wonderful YA author. But so far it has to be my favorite. Nicole has such a connection with teen girls and it comes out in her writing. Olivia reminds me of so many teen girls in her actions and her desires. The struggles she has within herself to do the right thing or do what will "make it all go away" are things we all face at that age and beyond, if we are honest. Diamond Estates is a wonderful place filled with caring people. What a great concept that should be implemented all over this country to help lost teens. I loved the fact that it was a community of people that helped get the center started and kept it going with prayer and support. I also loved the fact that the girls dealt with real life situations. It wasn't painted over. Things were hard and needed to be faced head on. And each one had to deal with things instead of letting someone else do it for them, in most cases. It shows us how each person has their own burdens and hardships. Things that we have gone through or are going through that sometimes even seem impossible to live through. But it also shows us that we are not fighting against things of this world, not even the person that is doing terrible things to you. We are up against Satan and his evil forces. In order to battle that we must call upon a force much greater than ourselves. Without Jesus we cannot hope to win the battle or the war. I think this is a great book to share with teen girls in your life. I also think it is a great book to share with women of any age who have a desire to reach out to teens and might be looking for avenues to do that. What an awesome thing it would be if women all over this country joined together, with their spouses and others in their churches, to start places like Diamond Estates to help teens find Christ. Share this book with someone for Christmas this year! It will be worth every penny!

  • Laura
    2019-04-26 22:44

    Title: THE WISHING PEARLAuthor: Nicole O’DellPublisher: Barbour BooksOctober 2011ISBN: 978-1616264543Genre: Inspirational/young adultOlivia is sixteen and is anxious to get away from her step-father’s sexual abuse. But Mom won’t listen to her when she tries to talk to her, and just accuses her of being unkind to Charles. But then Olivia’s new friends introduce her to alcohol and drugs, and Olivia finds that when she’s drunk or stoned she doesn’t worry too much about her step-father.When Olivia’s Mom finds out, she also learns about a home for trouble teens. She takes Olivia out for a visit, but Olivia isn’t interested in staying. She wants to be with her friends, she wants her mom to listen, and she wants things to be made right. But things go from bad to worse. When Olivia comes to the brink of a complete breakdown, she finds herself at a crossroads. Will the demons of her past be too much to beat? Or will she find hope and healing?THE WISHING PEARL is a gritty book about the side of life that is down and dirty. Olivia has a lot of issues to deal with to begin, but add in an abusive stepfather, a clueless Mom who doesn’t seem to care, and a bad group of friends and everything skyrockets out of control. If you have a teenager, then this would be a good book for them to read, but I suggest reading it first and then discussing the book with your teen as they read it. Make sure the topics are all addressed, there is a lot to deal with in here. Recommended for the mothers of teens and teen girls themselves. Discussion questions are included at the end of the book. $9.99. 367 pages.

  • SparksofEmber
    2019-03-29 15:50

    I liked this book fairly well. The way it portrayed the abuse was exactly how I can handle it – implied but off-screen and vaguely. I also thought it did a fantastic job showing how a series of choices can lead you deeper and deeper until you look back and wonder, “How did I end up here?”The first half felt long to me because I was looking forward to Olivia getting to Diamond Estates (and for the mild romance to start). I loved Diamond Estates – it’s the kind of place I wish my husband could find to work at. It was so similar to the facilities he has worked at but with the added benefit of being Christian. (Though I know enough about his job to find a few Diamond Estates policies less than credible.) I did think the end dragged a bit – once everything was all out in the open the book started to feel like a very long wrap-up. And I got a little frustrated at Olivia wanting to sneak a smoke all the time. It didn’t help that my ebook didn’t have any spacing/**/indicators for scene cuts. So there’d be time-jumps between paragraphs and it would take me a minute to figure out time had passed and I was always confused. Date stamps would have helped a lot. (This is probably why it bothered me when someone’s boyfriend signed “I love you” at the end – so far as I was concerned, it felt like they’d only been dating a week!)My one main beef with the book was that the ending was too neat & easy. For a book focused on real problems with troubled youth, it was unrealistic for resolution to be so tidy.

  • Jennifer Ellision
    2019-03-28 17:57

    Got this gallley from NetGalley... reading/review to come!Full review here: http://www.almostgrownup.net/2011/08/...This is definitely Christian Fiction (capital C, capital F), so if that’s not what you’re in the mood for, then to be honest you’ll probably want to steer clear.But if you are looking for Christian Fiction (again with those capitals), then The Wishing Pearl isn’t a bad choice.Olivia Mansfield is in a downward spiral. Her father passed away years ago and her mother is married to a truly odious man. Olivia has fallen in with a crowd of girls that don’t seem to be on the right path either. She takes up drinking, smoking, and marijuana. She gets brought home by the police. And she and her friends drive drunk on a routine basis.After more catastrophic events, Olivia goes to Diamond Estates to heal internally and find her way back to God.The journey is wrought with lapses, confrontation, and hope, but ultimately the book is uplifting as Olivia rediscovers God and Jesus.Rating (from 1-5): 3. It was a pleasant read, but definitely only recommended to those who like the Christian Fiction genre, as there is passage after passage of finding God, defeating Satan, and accepting Christ. It was a bit overwhelming, but I did enjoy the book.

  • Kristen
    2019-04-22 22:08

    This book does have a christian base to it.. even if it doesn't really seem like it in the beginning. I know that some people don't like reading books that have a church undertone, so I figured I would mention it. This book tackles a very tough topic, and I feel it does it very well. Olivia has been through a lot in her life, and isn't even an adult yet. She falls in with the wrong crowd but eventually gets presented with a opportunity to better herself and takes it. She realizes that not everything that has happened to her was God's doing, but that through it all God was there supporting her and waiting for her to acknowledge him. Olivia develops some really great relationships and develops feelings for a boy. The characters are all very well developed and the social issues that they all face in their various lives are well addressed.I went into this story expecting one thing and came out with something completely different. I'm an emotional reader, and this one had my crying at parts. I understand that this type of story isn't for everyone, that some people don't like them. But I've come to love books under the "Christian Fiction" umbrella. I enjoy reading a story that an author as constructed to display the christian faith. I enjoyed the story and am very glad I picked up this book.

  • Imagination Meg
    2019-03-28 22:02

    I loved this book!!! It had a strong message about how God can change your life if only you let him. It didn't claim that God talked to the protagonist, Olivia, all the time or that he just changed her. It showed how you have to believe and want help. It was a great book for any teen to read and learn from. O'Dell did an amazing job of showing how easily anyone, not just teens, can all of a sudden be in way over their head when they were far away just days ago. The Wishing Pearl is also a fun read - not just a preachy one. In fact, despite the strong Christian message, it wasn't really in your face. Olivia didn't go to Diamond Estates - the school that helps the girls with an admittedly kind of stupid name (you get used to it) - really wanting to be helped. She agreed to go, but she wasn't working on her problems. So almost the entire book was her brushing it off - which made me like it better. The story was inspiring to read as well as fun. A must-read for every Christian teen - everyone really.

  • Valerie Comer
    2019-04-24 14:41

    Olivia Mansfield’s brother has been protecting her, to some degree, from their abusive stepfather. With their mother blissfully in lalaland and her brother off to college, Olivia has no one but her new friends and her beloved oboe to divert her attention. Her new friends are leading her down the path of drinking and partying, but Olivia doesn’t much care. She can’t see any reason to change her life until the unthinkable happens.Suddenly Olivia is face to face with the realities her choices have brought her, and she voluntarily checks into a Teen Challenge program at Diamond Estates in Colorado. But even though she desires to make a new beginning–most of the time–huge obstacles need to be overcome, not only for her, but for her mother.I’ll admit to being extremely biased. Nicole O’Dell is a close friend and critique partner of mine. But if you’re a teen or know a teen, you need this book. The Wishing Pearl is a strongly written novel that will reach into teens’ lives and show them hope.

  • Stefne Miller
    2019-03-31 14:42

    I am so excited about Nicole O'Dell's new series, "Diamond Estates". Why? Because I loved The Wishing Pearl so much!Nicole has found a way to tackle some very tough topics while being entertaining, heartbreaking and gritty. She finds a way to weave in several important messages but they are tucked so neatly into the story, they don't stand out as being "preachy" or feel like lectures. It's simply a touching story that will keep you engrossed and you'll just so happen to walk away having learned some very valuable lessons.From the very first page of the novel, you will root for Olivia. You want her to find her way and you want to protect her from things that are going on in her life. Olivia and/or her friends are so real and face such realistic situations, that there is a character every teen girl will be able to relate to. And isn't that what we all hope for in a book?The Wishing Pearl is a story of restoration and hope. You'll pick it up and won't want to put it down.

  • Shellie Neumeier
    2019-04-24 15:08

    Haunted by the memory of her father’s death and subject to her stepfather’s abuse, Olivia Mansfield turns to drugs and alcohol to numb her pain. When her addictions lead to a fatal accident, she turns to Diamond Estates for help. There she befriends a group of girls struggle with difficult pasts. Together, the foursome overcomes self-destructive behaviors, feelings of worthlessness, and even the center’s resident mean girl. Nicole O’Dell treats each of the girl’s issues with discretion and wisdom. I don’t say this often, but I loved this book. It truly was hard to put it down. Well-written and heart-breaking, The Wishing Pearl will leave you changed. 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.”

  • Elise
    2019-04-19 16:08

    Okay, but I found one editing mistake where a word was left out *gasp* :O and some of the scenes were a bit confusing. If the setting and character positions were more explained, as well as who the hey is in the room at the time, it might make more sense. Chapter transitions and the length of time passed is just about as vague as in Great Expectations by Charles Dickens. Also, the title is wayyy off. It has almost nothing to do with anything relatively important to the plot...?Overall, it was an okay book aimed for pre-teen girls and teenage girls, written from a Christian Worldview perspective. It mentioned and included traumatic issues that may be prevalent among American teens today, but some parts of the story weren't very believable. I give this book a 3/5 stars for good-okay-ish writing, intriguing characters, and a moving storyline.I read this book in one sitting yesterday.

  • Sofia
    2019-04-06 14:56

    I didn't like this book. Sorry. First of all, I think that even though I can understand that Olivia went through a lot of hard stuff, and some real girls have some of the same problems as her, it all seemed sort of cheesy. Maybe it was just the way it was written. The second problem I had with it was her "touching" rock bottom scene in the hospital with the pastor's wife. Once again, I realize these things do happen, and very often. But O'Dell just didn't pull it off convincingly enough for me. Third problem: JUSTIN. EEEK that guy bothered me. He gave me the shivers. Olivia herself I liked a lot. She got a bit cheesy toward the end, but I liked how whatever happened, she was there to back up her friends. And when Kira came apologizing, her ability to forgive amazed me.However, there was only one character in the whole book that I loved through and through. One girl who I thought deserved a book of her own. That girl is Skye. I think a book about HER would be worth reading.

  • Citlaly Medina
    2019-03-29 17:55

    This book is a about a 16 year old girl name Oliva, her father died when she was young. After her father's death her mom decided t date a new guy name Charles, Oliva doesn't like Charles. She calls him Chuck which made him mad. Oliva was afraid of Charles. Once she had her door locked and Charles came in the middle of the night and banged on her door and told her that he didn't like the doors to be locked, once she let him in he broked the lock. She told her mom and she didn't believed her. The only person she could trust is her older brother but he was leaving to college. She went to a party and made some bad choices like drinking and smoking. Her brother caught her there and talke with their mom about it.

  • Rebecca McKinnon
    2019-04-12 23:03

    3.5 starsOlivia's father died in a car accident when she was young, and Olivia was the only one present. That would be hard enough for anyone. But after Olivia's mother remarries, her life goes downhill.This book was definitely written with a Christian audience in mind. Diamond Estates is run by a Christian church, and the main goal for them is to get the girls to find God and rely on Him to help them heal.I can see how this book could be viewed as dark and depressing (***SPOILER*** There's sexual abuse, as well as drug & alcohol abuse, death and even a hostage situation, although it's all handled well ***END SPOILER***) but it could also be seen as uplifting as Olivia and the friends she makes at Diamond Estates overcome their pasts and start over.

  • Jasmine
    2019-04-22 22:05

    I just finished a book by author Nicole O’Dell. This is the first book I have ever read anything by her and it was fantastic! This book is about Olivia Mansfield. She is troubled but from the outside looking in she has it all she even lives in a mansion. Keep in mind life is not always as it seems, she suffers abuse from her step dad and feels her mom does not even care. She her father’s death haunts her and she wants to escape her life. How does she do this? She parties too much and she loses one of her friend when she dies. This book made my cry and I could not put it down. Olivia was so down on her luck but would a second chance come. Read the book and see. I give this book 5 stars! I did not want it to end.

  • Henry Lorenzo
    2019-03-27 14:40

    There are times where we feel we are fighting our battles alone, and Olivia was no exception to this feeling: having witnessed the loss of her dad at an early age, dealing w/a horrifying step dad, and losing her best friend are just 3 obstacles this teenager had to face alone.Alone that is, until she checked her self into Diamond Estates. It is here that Olivia has not only found the support she needed, but also by faith she turns into a great means of support for others.I found this to be a definite "page turner" & prime example of: "No matter how a person might look or act on the outside, we must also be mindful of what might be going on on the inside."

  • Ruth
    2019-04-14 16:08

    This troubled teen ends up at a faith-based treatment program. It is clear that it is the staff's belief that the only way to truly heal these girls is for them to develop a personal relationship with Jesus. To the author's credit, she doesn't present religion as the whole cure, but in the end, once Olivia accepts Jesus everything else falls into place--almost too well if you ask me. I found the story to be engaging and I really grew to care about Olivia but the book is obviously trying to make a religious point and in my opinion does so at the expense of realism at the end. Grade: B-I'd like to thank the publisher for making a complimentary review copy available via NetGalley.