Ten by Gretchen McNeil
Rating: 3.5/5 Stars
Genres: Mystery, Contemporary
Release Date: September 8th, 2012
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?
Ten was a book I was absolutely dying to get my hands on early this year, when I first heard about it for 2 main reasons. One, it’s a modern retelling of And Then There Were None which is probably the only required reading book I’ve ever actually liked in my life, and the only older book I’ve really enjoyed (classics aren’t really my thing!). Secondly, the creepiness. Before reading this book, I’d never been creeped out or freaked out because of a book, and I desperately wanted to be spooked by a book. And this book did that for me, even if it wasn’t to the extent I had hoped. With an intriguing mystery with an edge of creepiness, Ten packs a lot into 294 pages.
The best thing about Ten has got to be the creepiness. I started this book right around midnight, hoping that I would get a little freaked out. (Please tell me I’m not crazy for wanting to be creeped out by a book!) It’s like someone who watches a horror movie at night- they know it’s going to be scary, but they do it anyways. Well, I had to put this book down a little while after, because it was a tad too creepy to be reading so late at night, alone. It was the best feeling ever, you guys! I’ve always wanted to get creeped out by a book, and Ten definitely did it for me, although I wish it could have been even scarier, like to the extent where I was locking doors and such. But still, this book is definitely the creepiest book I’ve read! Just the whole feeling of the island and the murders created this deliciously creepy and spooky atmosphere.
Ten’s plot also kept you hooked throughout the story. When I picked this book up again (the following morning I may add), I didn’t put it down until I finished. I love when this happens! I was really engaged in the story and needed to know what happened. While my theories were mainly proved right, there were some great twists thrown into the book that surprised me and kept me hooked.
That being said, however, there weren’t too many twists that threw me. That was because most of the twists and red herrings all came from And Then There Were None. This book was just too close to ATTWN. From the huge plot twist to the end, from the way most of them were killed, it was all too alike for me. I read ATTWN a couple of years ago, so while I didn’t remember the book perfectly, I knew enough to recognize a lot of the twists, characters, and the way the deaths occurred. I wish the author would have put a bit more of a spin on the book. Just because the book was a retelling doesn’t mean that it had to copy it exactly.
Also, I wished for a little more character development. Maybe it was because the book was so short, but I felt that I didn’t even get to sort out everyone’s names before people started dying, which takes out a lot of the emotion. If we knew the characters better, and had more development, then the deaths would have meant more, and that would also have added to the creepy factor of the book. But since we didn’t get that, I was always feeling a little detached from the story, even with Meg. We did get to know a little bit about Meg, but I still felt as if I wasn’t fully in the story, because of the lack of development.
Overall, Ten is a wonderfully creepy book with a fantastic plot! Even though it wasn’t as creepy as I had hoped, I had to put this book down in the night. Also, it was quite similar to And Then There Were None and there was a lack of character development in the story. But, I still really did enjoy this story! If you’re looking for something creepy and action packed, I would definitely recommend that you pick this book up, especially if you haven’t read And Then There Were None!