Wednesday 17 April 2013

Book Review: Ten by Gretchen McNeil

Okay so I don't usually go for murder mystery books, but this book left me lying in my bed in a fetal position at 1 am in the morning.

Title: Ten
Author: Gretchen McNeil

In a modern twist of And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie, ten teenagers are lured to an isolated island. Stranded there with no way of contacting the outside world, they slowly get killed off one by one. It's up to Meg to find the killer before it's too late. 

Wow. Just. Wow. As I said earlier, this isn't my usual genre, but the suspense of the novel was brilliantly written. I read And Then There Were None last year, and to be honest I got very confused between the characters and the murders and the final resolution. But this book adds a very modern twist to the plot, with teen dramas and romance, and the motivation of the killer is definitely way stronger than in the original Agatha Christie book. Each character is also suitably developed to be able to differentiate between them and their personalities are all screamingly real. I mean, who hasn't met than one bitchy overachiever, or a selfish classmate?

Meg's personal drama also adds tension to the plot. Her friendship with Minnie and complications with hot boy TJ make it all the more exciting and make you want to find out what happens. It's undeniably real problems and the characters are all human. The action is also constant and keeps you revising your guess of the identity of the killer. When it all goes down Lord of the Flies style, you can really understand the characters. 

The only problems I had with the book was that it didn't begin so well. It immediately picks up without properly introducing the characters, and the reason that all the teens got together on that island is a bit shady. But most of that is soon cleared up later in the plot. 

I would recommend this book to anyone who likes action, suspense and mystery. The murders are described matter-of-factly, so it doesn't focus so much on the horror of it as the reactions of the characters in the situations. There are a few sexual references (though nothing actually happens) and swear words. This book also deals with real problems like suicide, depression and behavioural disorders. I would rate it at PG13.

Grade: A+   Definitely read it. This should be a movie.

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