Becca and Charlie have known each other since university.
Becca and Charlies have also hated each other since university.
Until now. Until Ally’s bucket list. The death of their loved one should mean they can go their separate ways and not look back. But completing the list is something neither of them can walk away from.
And sometimes, those who bring out the worst in you, also bring out the very best…
Over the course of ten years, Becca and Charlie’s paths collide as they deal with grief, love and life after Ally.
Not since Emma and Dex in One Day and Will and Lou in Me Before You will you root for a couple as much.
What’s it about (in a nutshell):
Ten Years by Pernille Hughes is a poignant story of grief, moving on, and finding love where you least expect it.
Initial Expectations (before beginning the book):
From the cover, the story looks like a love story. And the description tells a tale that is potentially an enemy’s to lover’s tale that with a death of a loved one as the impetus for their changing relationship. Bringing in a death could mean that the story has extra sad and reflective layers.
Actual Reading Experience:
What I loved the most about Ten Years is how it took me on an emotional journey from page one until the end. I shed happy tears at the end, and I never do that! The book starts with the death of Ally, best friend to Becca and fiancé to Charlie. A book that begins with such a moving scene must continue bringing the emotions as the story unfolds, and I felt like it did.
I also enjoyed the realistic depiction of how long it would take two people who loved the same person to allow themselves to fall in love with each other after that person’s passing. Their relationship was also full of ups and downs, which is equally believable. Their path to finding a romantic partner in each other was never going to be easy, and it wasn’t.
Becca is a prickly woman who is determined to make it in acting. She doesn’t like Charlie and is not afraid to let everyone know about it. But she loved her best friend, Ally, and would do anything for her even after her passing.
Charlie is a man who tends to avoid those things in life that are hard, including telling anyone significant in his life about his dead fiancé. He is likable despite his failings because of his love for Ally.
Narration & Pacing:
The story is told in 3rd person narration which works perfectly with telling both Becca’s and Charlie’s tales and going back and forth in the timeline. The pace was moderate to slow, but since I read it in little increments for a read-a-long, I didn’t mind this. I definitely think this is a book best read slowly.
The setting is in the UK, and the main characters go to different spots in the country and live there. I love how other locations are part of the bucket list plot. I feel like the ever-changing settings fit in perfectly with this story about growing and changing.
To Read or Not to Read:
If you are looking for a story that will move you and have you crying happy tears, Ten Years is just the book you are looking for.
Overall Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
- Originality: ⭐⭐⭐💫
- Writing Quality: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
- Pace: ⭐⭐⭐
- Character Development: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
- ‘Couldn’t Put It Down’-ness: ⭐⭐⭐
- Use of Setting: ⭐⭐⭐⭐