When I Was Ten by Fiona Cummins

A tense and gripping look at a troubling childhood and the secrets shared!

When I Was Ten by Fiona Cummins
366 Pages
Out Now

Opening Line: The girl is twelve and she is running.

Twenty-one years ago, Dr Richard Carter and his wife Pamela were killed in what has become the most infamous double murder of the modern age.

Their ten year-old daughter – nicknamed the Angel of Death – spent eight years in a children’s secure unit and is living quietly under an assumed name with a family of her own.

Now, on the anniversary of the trial, a documentary team has tracked down her older sister, compelling her to break two decades of silence.

Her explosive interview sparks national headlines and journalist Brinley Booth, a childhood friend of the Carter sisters, is tasked with covering the news story.

For the first time, the three women are forced to confront what really happened that night – with devastating consequences for them all.


Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

When I Was Ten is a story of secrets that the reader slowly unpicks as they read on.

There are three parts to the story, the ‘Who’, ‘Why’ and ‘When’. It’s told from Catherine and Brinley’s point of view with chapters alternating between them. Throughout there are also little snippets of text clearly speaking to someone but we don’t know who is writing this or to who.

There are some really strong parts to this book, especially the ‘Why’ section which was my favourite as it goes into more detail about the sisters past, which was heartbreaking to read about but is needed to really understand just what happened that night and the events that unfolded afterwards.

The book really focuses on the tabloid and newspaper side of things, showing how they track down the sisters to get an exclusive story but in the process they reveal her identity ruining everything she has spent years trying to protect. There were some other chapters surrounding a minister which I didn’t think added to the story in any way….but again they did highlight the power of the media and the lengths they’ll go to to get a story.

I couldn’t put the book down as you knew there were secrets that the girls shared and I was desperate to find out what they were. However, you did initially find out a big ‘twist’ part way through and despite there being another small one near the end it just wasn’t a satisfying enough twist for me – it just wasn’t that shocking.

Overall despite me being slightly disappointed with the ending and twists it was still a very tense thriller which had me hooked from the beginning.

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