Wish, published by Point/Scholastic in Jan. 2010
Author: Alexandra Bullen
I happened on this book almost accidentally, as Amazon had it available for free for Kindle as some sort of a promotion. I downloaded it, and promptly forgot it. I found it again while looking through my Kindle for something to read on my way home from Germany.
Olivia and Violet were twins, but very different. Where Olivia was quiet and studious, Violet was rebellious and exciting. This book starts a few months after Violet dies, with Olivia and her parents struggling to cope with her loss.
After they move across country to San Francisco, Olivia has even more trouble coping with her new school. Shy and withdrawn without her sister, she has trouble connecting with the teens in her new school, especially the ultra-cool ones. Her parents are no help. Her mother has thrown herself into her high-powered work, and her father putters about the house doing endless projects, but neither seems able to focus on Olivia.
A chance visit to a small and highly unusual shop leaves Olivia with an opportunity she cannot pass up. She has the chance to make three wishes come true, and there is no doubt in her mind what her first wish will be.
Unfortunately, there are three wishes, and the latter two are much harder. Therein lies the story, and it is a clever use of the classic three-wishes scenario. Should she wish for the handsome and cool Soren to notice her? Should she wish for something for someone else? Olivia learns a lot about herself and life as she tries to make those decisions without causing disaster.
I found the book charming and compelling, and there might have even been a tear in my eye at the end (but I'm an old softie). It isn't perfect. Some situations are resolved too easily, and I wish the author had developed the side characters more, but I would still strongly recommend this book to teens who like romance. (Parental note: there is some teenage drinking, although it is not celebrated, just realistic.)
Four stars out of five.
Find out more about 'Wish' on Amazon.com
Find out more about 'Wish' on Amazon.co.uk