Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Review: Ten by Gretchen McNeil

Title: Ten
Author: Gretchen McNeil
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Age Group: Young Adult
Category: Mystery/Horror
Release date: September 18th, 2012
Pages: 294 (Hardcover)
Rating: 3.5 out of 5
Source: Gifted
Goodreads | Amazon | Author

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?

When Meg tags along with her best friend to the so-called party of the year, she's expecting to have a good time.  It's supposed to be an experience they'll never forget, which is perfect, seeing as Meg and Minnie will have to split ways before college begins.  Unfortunately, there's an awful storm, the party's hostess hasn't even shown up and strange things begin to happen with no one to blame.  Slowly, teens are being picked off one by one, and Meg has to figure out who is behind it or risk getting killed herself.

The story was entertaining enough.  Short, quick and a little cheesy, like most teen horror flicks.  That's what I loved about it, though.  Gretchen McNeil knows how to draw in an audience.  Though Ten wasn't as creepy as Possess was, I still found myself unable to resist turning the pages.  Meg was by far my favorite character, as she seemed to be the most level-headed of the bunch.  Of course, being stranded on an island is stressful enough...but what would you do if there was also a killer on the loose?

You may or may not be able to figure out who the killer is before they are revealed, but I think the ride is the best part of the journey.  The only thing I wish that the book would have had is more of a fear-factor.  The premise sounds scary enough, but the story didn't seem to deliver that pulse-quickening, skin-crawling sensation that I love when I dive into a horror.

Overall, I thought the author did a great job.  It's a fun read when you want something entertaining, but it did let me down a little.  I was expecting something more than I got, even if I did enjoy the story as a whole.  I'd seriously recommend it to those who love ridiculous 90's slasher movies, as it reminded me of one the whole way through.


  1. I felt the same about this one as you too, in fact we gave it the same rating. I still have to write my review but it was a good read because it was quick :) Nice review!
    -Kimberly @ Turning the Pages

    1. Glad you felt the same! I agree, one of the most appealing things to the book is the fact that the reader could easily fly through it. :)

  2. You were kinder that me in rating this one, I think I only mustered a 2-star for this one on Goodreads (which is still a "it's okay" rating--so not that bad.

    I agree that it was cheesy. I suppose there was just too many people that needed to die and too little time to do it, so it pretty much happened in rapid succession. It wasn't long before I was desensitized to the whole thing and I didn't care about people dying anymore.

    What made me dislike this was the main characters, and the romance which just didn't work for me. And Minnie and Meg's friendship, which wasn't healthy. I kept being told that Meg and Minnie were the best of friends, but all I saw was Minnie holding a grudge and ruining her best friend's life. (even though she has a medical condition, it's not enough to convince me that she's a great person)

    But despite my dislike for the characters, I admit it was a fast read (I think it was partly due to the loose line spacing as well.)

    I also reviewed Then here, if you're inclined: http://noveltoybox.wordpress.com/2012/11/09/review-ten-by-gretchen-mcneil-2012/

    Lilian @ A Novel Toybox