Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Ten by Gretchen McNeil

Ten by Gretchen McNeil
2012, Balzer + Bray

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?

Why read: Received for review from publisher

What impressed me: This truly was an updated, young adult version of Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None, which is one of my favorite books. It dealt well with the modern mystery problems of cell phones and the internet and gave a plausible reason why the teens would go to the island as well as why no one would be looking for them,

What disappointed me: Major, major problem: The ingenious twist Christie utilized in the ending of And Then There Were None was copied exactly by McNeil in Ten making it less of a twist and more of a lazy, easy way out creatively. Also, the killer's motivations were stupid, at best. Unlike Christie's version, the "crimes" the victims committed could only be seen as worthy of death by the most self-absorbed person on the planet.

Recommended: Ehh, not really. It was okay, but Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None is a million times better.

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