Early Buzz: Ten by Gretchen McNeil
My Early Buzz feature aims to bring attention to upcoming releases that I’ve recently enjoyed! Click here to see past Early Buzz posts. Full reviews for featured titles will be posted closer to their release date.
This time around, I’m featuring Ten by Gretchen McNeil.
Summary from Goodreads:
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 the 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?
Five Reasons Why You’ll Love Ten:
The characters. Unlike most horror movies, Ten actually lets us get to know the characters before they’re killed off. This makes their death hit a little bit harder—especially towards the end.
The suspense. The weekend I read Ten, I was supposed to be studying for finals. That went out the window for an entire afternoon so that I could finish the book—it’s that gripping. So definitely make sure to read Ten at a time where you can devour the whole thing in one sitting!
The realistic reactions. Gretchen McNeil’s characters don’t instantly start trying to find a killer—they try to rationalize the situation and then they freak the hell out. The group of teens reacts like, well, actual teens. Some are level headed, some are weepy…but they’re not members of Scooby Doo’s Mystery Gang. I liked that McNeil kept her characters real.
The creative killing. This is a little morbid, but I liked how creative the murders were! With (presumably) ten characters that needed to die, it could have been easy for the deaths to get…boring. (Yikes, did I really just write that?) But, uh, the intricate setup for each character’s death (and how it ties to the overall story) is really cool (y’know, in a fictional way).
The cover. I’m usually not one to comment on covers, but come on–that cover is legit gorgeous. It perfectly reflects the mood of the book, which is rare these days. It’s dark, foreboding, and the red of the title parallels the red tallies that are made on a wall when someone is killed on the island. Shudder!