Review – TEN

Posted February 27, 2013 by Emz Chang in review / 2 Comments

Ten by Gretchen McNeil

TITLE: TEN
AUTHOR: Gretchen McNeil
TYPE & SOURCE: Hardcover from library

SYNOPSIS: 

SHHHH!
Don’t spread the word!
Three-day weekend. Party at White Rock House on Henry Island.
You do NOT want to miss it.

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?

LINKS: Gretchen McNeil’s WebsiteBlogAmazon | Barnes & Noble
REVIEW: Wow, TEN was an extremely chilling read, in more ways than one. TEN is about a group of teenagers who think they have been invited to one of the hottest house parties of the year on an island. Only to find out they are terribly mistaken. Two best friends, Meg and Minnie, one hot guy, T.J., whose best friend happens to be an awkward ex with his new girlfriend, and a couple of other people. What could go wrong? Oh, I don’t know, maybe people start dying in scary ways, and they lose contact with mainland… They are all there for a specific reason, and that reason is NOT to party.

I think TEN was paced just perfectly. Just slow enough to build the right amount of suspense, but fast enough so the story is not dragging. The story was beautifully written in such a way that it was able to move the story telling go smoothly. Once I started reading, I had a hard time stopping. TEN had just the right amount of mystery and horror in it. I adore mystery books, but tend to dislike horror. I’ll admit that after reading TEN, I had to sleep with the light on. Just kidding, it wasn’t that scary. Just scary enough to make the story seem a bit spooky and alluring. Gretchen McNeil perfectly crafted the story so that the reader wasn’t that confused at what was happening and left you guessing what was going to happen next. She also did a wonderful job leaving clues about why a certain thing happened.

The characters in TEN are all really interesting. They all have their own problems and inner demons. Like I said before, Gretchen McNeil gives you enough hints that you can start to formulate your own conclusions on why things were happening and what was going on. One of the reasons I couldn’t put the book down, was that I had a fun time guessing why they were invited to a party that wasn’t really a party. What deep dark secrets landed them here? What did they do?

As much as I liked the secrets of the characters, I thought some of them were a bit shallow and were only there so they could add the body count. Others had problems I didn’t get. Meg spends a lot of time taking care of Minnie for what? Sure, Minnie might of sacrificed her popularity to become friends with Meg, and their friendship was amicable before, but now it just seems really weird. Minnie treats Meg like her slave, and Meg lets her. If Minnie says “I need my pills.”, Meg will go and get Minnie’s pills. I feel Meg doesn’t really take charge until it’s a bit too late. Plus Minnie is a bit selfish and clingy. Otherwise, I liked most of the characters. I thought they were well developed, or as well developed as a character who was in a perilous situation could be.

The romance in TEN gave me mixed feelings. I liked how romance itself did not really become a huge factor until later in the book. But I kind of disliked the way it was being featured in the beginning. Basically, Minnie and Meg are both “in love” with the same guy. Only, Meg knows Minnie likes him, but Minnie doesn’t know Meg likes him, (she lies every time the subject comes up). What makes it interesting and confusing is that the boy in question likes one of them. But Meg is willing to forget her feelings in order to keep her best friend. Did I mention I hate love triangles?



RATING: REALLY ICY

4 Snowflakes

RECOMMENDATION:  For fans of Gretchen McNeil’s other books. Also for people who like mystery with a hint of horror and romance.

Emz Chang

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