Sunday, October 19, 2014

{Review} Ten by Gretchen McNeil

Ten by Gretchen McNeil
Published: September 18th, 2012 by Blazer + Bray
Series: Standalone
Source: Purchased
Genre: YA, Mystery, Horror
Pages: 296

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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?

I REALLY, REALLY wanted to love this book!  After watching the TV Show Harper’s Island (which is amazing!), I was looking for something to fill the void I was left with.  Considering this book was a mystery, horror novel set on an island with teens being killed one by one, I knew I had to own it.  However, reading this book was not the same infatuation I had when watching Harper’s Island.

I thought the writing in this book was not groundbreaking, but it was still pretty solid.  I liked that this book was really fast paced, which enabled me to finish it in two days.  With this book only taking place over 3 days, a lot seems to happen and I never felt like the book was dragging at all.  I would not particularly call this book scary, but it was pretty gory.  It did have descriptions of dead bodies and deaths, so if that bothers you, then steer clear of this book. 

I LOVED the plot of this book, and although it was full of campy horror film clich├ęs, but I still really enjoyed it.  I didn’t see a lot of plot holes in the story and I thought that McNeil really thought out how the book would play out.  In many horror books and novels, I find that characters make rash decisions or are deliberately put into harms way to add more killings, but I never found that in this book.  The characters seemed to think situations through and made realistic choices when trying to escape or discover who the killer was.

The main reason why I did not enjoy the book was the characters.  I never really connected to any of them and did find them annoying.  The only characters I somewhat liked was Meg, T.J., Kumiko, and Gunner.  The rest got on my nerves and drove me crazy, especially Minnie.  I felt that the depth within the characters was very superficial and never delved any deeper.  I wish that McNeil would have added more information about each character (at least the main ones) that made me fearful for their survival, but instead, I really didn’t care if they lived or died.

The only thing I kind of liked about the characters was the relationship between Minnie and Meg, which might seem weird for some.  Initially I found their relationship annoying and questioned why they were even friends, but then I thought back to when I was 16-17 years old and found I could relate better.  With Minnie suffering from bipolar disorder, I could understand why she was such an unlikable character.  With Minnie's bipolar disorder on top of teenage hormones, it is understandable why she was so selfish, erratic, paranoid, and emotional.  I also understood how Meg felt indebted to Minnie for being her friend and sacrificing her friendships to continue a relationship with her.  While I found their relationship annoying, at the end, I did feel a little pang of sorrow for them.

The ending of this book was spoiled for me before I even cracked the first page.  In fact, it was spoiled for me right when I received the book.  I ordered this book right when it was released (2012) and then was spoiled so I waited…and waited….and waited to see if I could forget who the killer was, but I never could.  So, I can’t really say if I could guess who the killer was because I already knew going into the book.  I don’t think it was blatantly obvious, but I know some reviewers said that they guessed who it was right away.  However, I did think that the reason for the killings was really obvious and I guessed the majority of that portion.

Overall, I did somewhat enjoy this book, but the characters made me not love it.  I think this book could be enjoyable to a certain audience, but it is not for everyone.  If you enjoy campy horror films and are okay with predictability, I would give this book a chance.  However, I do suggest checking out McNeil’s other books, because everything she has written sounds really interesting and I look forward to reading her other book, Possess, which I have already purchased.

 Check out Gretchen McNeil's blog & website to keep up on all of her book releases.  Also, click on the pictures below to add her other books to your TBR shelf on Goodreads!

On a side note, most defiantly check out Harper's Island!!!  If you are interested, good news!  It is currently streaming on Netfix!

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