Ten Birthdays, Kerry Wilkinson

Netgalley copy in exchange for an honest review. 

The Blurb 

"There are going to be so many things I wish I could’ve told you in person, Poppy. I won’t get the chance to do that, so perhaps this is my only way…"

It’s Poppy Kinsey’s birthday.

She should be blowing out candles and opening presents – but hers falls on the type of heart-wrenching, agonising anniversary she would far rather forget.

The worst day of them all. The day her mother died.

But this year is special because the person she misses most in the world has left her a set of letters, one for each of her next ten birthdays.

As Poppy opens them year by year, she discovers that no matter how tough life gets, her mum will always be by her side, guiding her along the way.

My Thoughts

My heart.

My poor heart.

This book should be called: how to kill a girl in ten birthdays.


I loved everything about it, seriously: the characters are incredibly realistic and sweet and perfectly imperfect, the writing is exquisite, with beautiful moments suspended in time, and the pace is gorgeous: it's going fast, jumping a year ahead for each chapter, but it doesn't feel rushed or anything. I WANT MORE!

What I also want is to be best friends with Poppy Kinsey. Can I be best friends with Poppy Kinsey? 

This story was truly beautiful. Sweet, bittersweet, tragic and oh so real, yet funny and full of hope and love. It was like Kerry Wilkinson had decided to turn his words into colours to paint the most beautiful painting. 

I read it in one sitting, and now I'm at work, wondering what the hell to do with myself. I feel like this book broke me and put me back together. 


Selected Quotes 

  • "Poppy's eyes spun with purple and green stars at the sudden change of light." 
  • "Sometimes, you know in advance that something's going to hurt but you do it anyway because it's still worth it." 
  • "Boys can't wrap.
    - What about Eminem?
    - You're not funny." 
  • "I'm going to give you the same present every year to make sure you don't stop drawing." 
  • "Life's passing me by." 
  • "Every day begins with a blank page. Turn over: this is yours." 


Author's website 


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