REVIEW: TEN by Gretchen McNeil
by Gretchen McNeil
Expected Publication: September 18, 2012
And their doom comes swiftly.
It was supposed to be the weekend of their lives—an exclusive house party on Henry Island. Best friends Meg and Minnie each have their reasons for being there (which involve T.J., the school’s most eligible bachelor) and look forward to three glorious days of boys, booze and fun-filled luxury.
But what they expect is definitely not what they get, and what starts out as fun turns dark and twisted after the discovery of a DVD with a sinister message: Vengeance is mine.
Suddenly people are dying, and with a storm raging, the teens are cut off from the outside world. No electricity, no phones, no internet, and a ferry that isn’t scheduled to return for two days. As the deaths become more violent and the teens turn on each other, can Meg find the killer before more people die? Or is the killer closer to her than she could ever imagine?
MY THOUGHTS: 4.5 OUT OF 5 STARS
Meg and her best friend Minnie, along with eight other high school kids, have been invited to a rich friend’s home on the isolated Henry Island for a wild party weekend. But things definitely don’t go as expected when they become stranded because of a raging storm, with no power, no TV, and no phone. It gets even worse when bodies start piling up and their numbers start diminishing.
With everyone a suspect, tensions run high and friend turns on friend. If they can figure out how they are all connected, maybe they can find out who’s doing the killing–and how to stop them before everyone winds up dead.
I’ve seen other reviews saying that TEN is based off an old Agatha Christie book, and then giving a negative review because this book “doesn’t live up to the original.” That’s why I don’t put stock in anyone’s Goodreads reviews. Well guess what–I’ve never read an Agatha Christie story in my life, and I still enjoyed this book.
This story is told in third person, which is cool because it gives a non-personal aspect to the narration. There are so many characters that it would be unfair to simply focus on one person’s point of view. And the cast of characters is unique, but none of them are too deep. In a way I think it’s cool that we didn’t get a whole lot of background on each one; it would have made it hard to read if we connected to each individual then had to read about their death.
The atmosphere and world building are what gives this story its’ major creep factor. Stranded on an island with absolutely no way of getting off and no connection to the outside world? That’s scary enough in itself without the addition of so many deaths!
The writing style really flowed for me–nothing too poetic or complicated. It kept the pages turning swiftly for me, and I found myself lost in the world of Henry Island while lying sick in bed. It was a nice escape.
The only issue I had, and it was a small one, was that I figured out the connection between all of the kids before they did themselves. I would have thought a girl as smart as Meg could have put the clues together a bit faster…but she figured it out eventually.
I definitely didn’t see the identity of the killer coming, though. The last few chapters of the book move at a scorching pace and it was hard to keep myself from reading ahead on the page.
I would recommend this book to anyone who needs a nice break from the monotony of paranormal series that are so popular these days. The book is stand alone of course, so that makes it different for me.
Nice job, Ms. McNeil.