Ten by Gretchen McNeil

Ten - Gretchen McNeil

Even though this book has less than stellar reviews (MASSIVE understatement), I still thought it might have potential. I really enjoy Agatha Christie and I LOVE the book And Then There Were None. I read it the first time in middle school, then again last year when I picked it up at a used bookstore. But this book being based on And Then There Were None is a gigantic insult to Agatha Christie. Huge. Enormous.


I had so many issues with this book that it's hard to know where to begin. I'll start with the pacing. Awful. For about the first 35% of this book I was a heartbeat away from giving up on it. And this makes me sound like a horrible person, but it didn't get much better after people started dying. There are books in which the author doesn't seem to know how to introduce characters gradually and instead they just info dump every single character appearing in the book, and their relationships with one another, and also add in characters from outside the book and how those people connect people within the book. Then you have people from three different schools, so those are all mentioned at the same time. It was just a lot of information to receive all at once and there definitely could have been a way of allowing that to happen more organically. So I was bored, then I had a whole bunch of information thrown at me that I couldn't give two craps about. But after the third death happened, I did want to know who the killer was and what their motive had been. That's when I started skimming.


Meg was a completely annoying main character. She allowed her "best friend" Minnie to treat her like absolute crap. It seemed to me she kept implying there was a larger reason that she allowed this to happen, so I kept waiting for that reason to turn up. It never did. I think Meg was just an insecure girl without a lot of friends, so she allowed herself to be treated like a doormat. I also thought the romantic development of this book was completely unrealistic and inappropriate. I don't care how unexperienced and hormonal these teenagers might be, there is no way any rational, sane person would be furthering their relationship with their crush while all of these people are being murdered one by one around them. Preposterous.


The only reason I didn't give this book just one star was because I could not figure out the identity of the murdered. Their identity and the entire backstory of that person's motivation really caught me off guard. I definitely appreciate unpredictability in a thriller-type book so that redeemed it a little in my eyes.


But there was no amount of redemption that could save this book from its writing and pacing, so two stars it is.