Rating: Six out of Ten Stars
Let me start by saying this book was a random find, random purchase for me. A local book store was going out of business and I wanted to provide a little more business before they closed. So I grabbed a book that looked half way interesting and bought it.
Needless to say I have completed it, only 294 pages is an easy quick read for me. This also means that I am going to figure it out faster than anyone. I had barely started the second chapter and guessed who the killer was. Not much of a challenge really, pretty obvious from the get go.
Any who I should really go and explain how this plot goes.
The main character is a teenage named Meg and you meet her crazy friend Minnie who she protects for various reasons. Then you find out that Minnie apparently has been keeping Meg from her crush T.J who she is in love with also (love triangle problem). They are heading off to an island for a party thrown my Jessica (who you never actually meet or talk too in the book). So the story goes on for introductions and who is in the house. Vivian, Lori, Nathan, Kenny, Ben, Minnie, Meg, T.J, Gunner and Kumiko are the ten people at this party.
Jessica never shows and they are stuck waiting for her the next day. A storm blows in and they lose cell service and phone lines go dead (set the horror movie mood). They cook a quick simple dinner and then Ben has an allergic reaction some almonds that are suddenly put in there (clue number two). See Ben is someone that they all don’t really seem to know but apparently he’s been hooking up with Jessica so no one questions it.
They decide to watch a movie but there is only one DVD case with a DVD in it (horror movie playon) and it’s a creepy home made video. Here is what it says:
*Cue creepy old school ten second count down*
“When you hurt someone…with intent….with cruelty…”
“To steal someone’s soul. To break someone’s heart. To lie, cheat, or steal. To destroy a reputation. Your actions are a crime.”
“Even if the law does not recognize it. Your betrayal, your backstabbing, your character assassination.”
“Steps must be taken to protect the innocent. Those steps begin right here, right now.”
“Vengeance is mine.”
And then the screen goes black. The so called count down is a count down of those watching dying. Lori is first killed (hung). We then move down the list to Ben, Vivian, Nate, Kenny, Kuminko, Gunner, T.J to Minni and Meg. See Meg is tricked into believing that T.J (the guy she has a crush on) is behind it. But wait for it, after shooting him you meet the real killer.
BEN! Of course it’s Ben. He’s the new kid no one really knows and why is he the first one picked to try and kill? This is the HUGE red flag if the unknown person isn’t the clue. Headless to say Minnie ends up dying and Meg saves the day. T.J is actually alive and the love they share is beautiful. The end.
I know that doesn’t sound like a great book but really it’s the basic outline. I try to keep it simple and to the point. As for Ben being the killer and how I figured it out (if you didn’t see it above) I have a list.
1. He’s the unknown new guy Jessica is supposedly dating.
2. He takes a direct liking to Minnie (who has her own psychological problems).
3. He doesn’t share anything about his allergy until it happens (Meg shoots in with the epi-pen).
4. He is then some how killed the same way (allergic reaction).
Those alone are the real clues to how this all went down. I immediately red flagged him for being a “new” kid in the group. Not to say that all new kids are the killer but just something to keep in mind. The next thing I flagged (as you see in list order) is his the allergic reaction. Random! And if he’s unknown, why would he be picked first and why before the video tape? Creepy start to the book and it keeps going from there.
I have it a six out of ten for several reasons. One, it’s predictable. Two, love story is never fully developed between T.J and Meg. Three Minnie is never given a good reason for as to why she is the way she is and Meg’s reason’s for protecting her are worthless. And finally, not long enough. A whole weekend of killings in less than 300 pages? Not what I expected.