Tex explores the same themes of her earlier novels; perhaps you've read The Outsiders or Rumble Fish. The novel focuses on youth, the loss of innocence, coming of age, and violence. Perhaps she wrote this book as a way of letting other people who feel the same way her characters feel know that they are not alone. Or perhaps she thought the story would be a good way for people to go out of their comfort zone and think about others. It's very difficult to say why an author writes what they do. S. E. Hilton is known for her novels about and for young adults, so most likely she wanted to speak to them about topics (like the ones mentioned above) that she sees as important and valid.