10 unfolds the story of the troubled and impulsive Simone struggling to navigate through the tumultuous years of adolescence. She finds support and guidance through an exchange of letters with the enigmatic Joy, a beautiful and affluent globe-trotter, helpful and wise far beyond her teenage years. As Simone’s life gradually descends into chaos, Joy strives to rescue her, drawing from her life experiences.
10 is a coming-of-age story about friendship, love, depression, and the virtues of life. Simone and Joy build a strong bond through letters as they both, in their own unique and surprising ways, grapple to come to terms with the significance and challenges of living a fulfilling life.
This book both warmed and moved me. The story of two young girls who become pen pals after meeting one another in the hospital. Simone, the troubled teen at the hospital for a concussion, starts off as a rebellious teenager. We watch her character develop and struggle with her mental health, battling it, seemingly alone.
On the other hand, you have the seemingly put-together Joy. Her name spells out what she radiates. She spends most of the story being what appears to be Simone’s one and only loyal friend. You see how she grows to care for Simone and how protective she becomes of her.
It was interesting to watch the two talk about their individual experiences. These two characters were vastly different in their life experiences, yet they helped each other journey through the pains of being a teenager.
There were points in this story where I felt my heart rate quicken in anticipation. Times where I couldn’t help but to smile at myself because of the friendship they forge. Then there were the tears that come throughout the book as it emotionally grabs a hold of you.
What makes this book even more impressive is the fact that the author wrote it while they were in high school. That brought an additional layer of authenticity to the story as the author is living the real-life experiences and is in the mind of her characters.