The Woman in Cabin 10

by

Ruth Ware

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The Woman in Cabin 10/Carrie Character Analysis

Lo meets the woman in the neighboring cabin when she goes next door to borrow some mascara. The woman, whom Lo mostly refers to as “the girl” in the first half of the story, is in her late 20s or early 30s, with long dark hair. When Lo first sees her, she’s wearing a Pink Floyd T-shirt with holes in it. Though her facial features aren’t memorable, Lo is struck by “the sheer liveliness and vivacity of her expression.” Using a wig and makeup, the girl impersonates Anne Bullmer after Richard Bullmer kills Anne on the first night of the cruise, appearing as “Anne” in the spa, in the Bullmers’ suite, at dinner, and in the hallway. On the second night of the cruise, she appears at Lo’s cabin door and lures her belowdecks, knocking her unconscious and locking her in a room to stop her from digging into the murder. Though the girl—who reveals her name is Carrie—initially starves Lo and deprives her of her medication, Lo gradually wins her trust, and she tells how Bullmer swept her off her feet in London, where Carrie, a struggling actress, was waitressing at the Magellan club. Though Carrie believed herself to be in love, Bullmer had actually planned to use her in his scheme to kill Anne and take her fortune. Carrie ultimately helps Lo escape the Aurora and, though evidence suggests she’s been drowned, she actually shoots Bullmer and escapes, accessing Anne’s fortune and sending money to Lo. Her childhood nickname had been “Tigger,” since no matter how hard they fall, “Tiggers bounce.”

The Woman in Cabin 10/Carrie Quotes in The Woman in Cabin 10

The The Woman in Cabin 10 quotes below are all either spoken by The Woman in Cabin 10/Carrie or refer to The Woman in Cabin 10/Carrie. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Entrapment and Isolation Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Scout Press edition of The Woman in Cabin 10 published in 2016.
Chapter 6 Quotes

I knocked again, three sharp knocks, and then, as an afterthought, a final loud whack in case they were hard of hearing.

The door flew open, as if the occupant had been standing on the other side.

“What?” she demanded, almost before the door had opened. “Is everything okay?”

[…]

“I’m your neighbor,” I said. She was young and pretty with long dark hair, and she was wearing a ratty Pink Floyd T-shirt with holes, which somehow made me like her quite a lot.

Page Number: 54
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 13 Quotes

…[T]he kind of publicity that an unexplained death would generate could sink the whole enterprise. Something like this could scupper the Aurora before she was even launched, and if that happened, everyone on board could lose their jobs, from the captain down to Iwona, the cleaner.

I knew that.

But I had heard something. Something that had made me start from my sleep with my heart pounding two hundred beats per minute, and my palms wet with sweat, and the conviction that somewhere very close by, another woman was in grave trouble. I knew what it was like to be that girl—to realize, in an instant, how incredibly fragile your hold on life could be, how paper-thin the walls of security really were.

Page Number: 122
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 15 Quotes

Cognitive behavioral therapy, counseling, psychotherapy—none of it really worked in the way that the pills did. Lissie says she finds the notion of chemically rebalancing your mood scary, she says it’s the idea of taking something that could alter how she really is. But I don’t see it that way; for me it’s like wearing makeup—not a disguise, but a way of making myself more how I really am, less raw. The best me I can be.

Page Number: 143
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 21 Quotes

As I applied mascara borrowed from Chloe in the bathroom mirror, I found myself searching for the angry, idealistic girl who’d started her journalism course at uni fifteen years ago, thinking of the dreams I’d had of becoming an investigative reporter and changing the world. Instead, I had fallen into travel writing at Velocity […] And that was fine—I wasn’t ashamed of the writer I’d become; like most people, I’d taken work where I could find it and tried to do the best I could in that job. But how could I look that girl in the mirror in the eye, if I didn’t have the courage to get out there and investigate a story that was staring me in the face?

Page Number: 202
Explanation and Analysis:

I was so busy thinking about Ben that as I rounded the corner near the upper-deck toilet, I almost tripped over Anne Bullmer. She was leaning back against the wall as if steeling herself for something, although whether to return to the party, or make her way back to her cabin, I wasn’t sure. She looked extremely tired, her face gray, the shadows around her eyes darker than ever […]

“I’m fine, I’m just very tired. Sometimes…” She swallowed, and her voice cracked for a moment, something in the cut-glass English accent slipping. “Sometimes it all just seems too much—d’you know what I mean? Such a performance.”

Page Number: 214
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 25 Quotes

It wasn’t just the blood she wiped away. When she came out, I froze. With that one simple act, I realized who she was.

In wiping away the blood she had wiped both her eyebrows clean off, leaving a smooth, skull-like forehead that was instantly, unbearably recognizable.

The woman in Cabin 10 was Anne Bullmer.

Page Number: 251
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 26 Quotes

While Richard was back in Lars’s cabin, establishing his alibi with an uninterrupted poker game, the woman in Cabin 10 had bundled the real Anne overboard and hoped that the body would never be found.

And they would have got away with it, if I—frightened and traumatized from the burglary—hadn’t heard the splash and jumped to a conclusion that was so wrong, it was almost completely right.

So who was she? […] I had no idea. But I knew one thing—she was my best hope of getting out of here alive.

Page Number: 259
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 27 Quotes

“Shut up!” She put her hands over her ears, shaking her head. “You don’t know what you’re talking about. Neither of us wanted to be in this situation!”

“Really? You think it’s coincidence he fell in love with someone who bears a startling resemblance to Anne? He planned this from the beginning. You’re just a means to an end […] All the money, without the controlling wife—I think he had that carrot waved in front of his nose by Anne’s illness […] And when the doctors gave her the all clear, he didn’t want to let go of it—is that right?”

Page Number: 263-264
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 30 Quotes

I didn’t think she was a killer, not by choice, anyway. And something had happened these last few days that had made her realize that. I thought of the long, nightmarish wait for her to come, the way the hours had ticked past so slowly for me, my hunger growing and growing inexorably. But now, for the first time, I thought that perhaps the hours had been as slow and torturous for her, too, and perhaps she, too, had come face-to-face with something she was not ready for. She must have imagined me down here, growing weaker and weaker, clawing at the door. Until at last her resolve broke and she ran down with a stolen plate of lukewarm food.

Page Number: 278
Explanation and Analysis:

I thought about it after she left—the stupidity of thanking a woman who was keeping you captive, buying your compliance by withholding food and drugs. Was I developing Stockholm syndrome?

Maybe. Although if I was, she had a considerably more advanced case than I did. Maybe that was closer to the truth—we weren’t captor and captive, but two animals in different compartments of the same cage. Hers was just slightly larger.

Page Number: 288
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 32 Quotes

Somehow I would get off this boat, if not for me, then for Anne, and Carrie. No—Fuck it.

For me.

I was getting off this boat for me—because I had done nothing to deserve this apart from being in the wrong place at the wrong time, and I was damned if Bullmer was going to add me to the list of women he had screwed over.

Page Number: 306
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 34 Quotes

With each step, I remembered Carrie’s frantic exhortations to get running and get out—her hysterical assertions about the reach of Richard’s influence.

It didn’t seem so hysterical now.

If only I had believed her—I should never have shown Anne’s ID at the hotel, or trusted Erik with even the few details I’d given him. But I just hadn’t quite believed that anyone, however wealthy, could have the kind of reach Carrie believed. Now I realized I was wrong. […]

What was I going to do? […] My best hope was finding a police station, but how? Where? And did I dare tell them the truth when I got there?

Page Number: 317
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 37 Quotes

I thought of Carrie’s terror, of the bruises on her body, of her belief that she would never escape Richard. She had been right. Judah said nothing, and I could not see his expression in the dark, but I felt his silent disagreement.

“What,” I demanded, “you don’t believe me? You don’t think people can be sucked into doing something out of fear, or inability to see any other way out?”

“No, it’s not that,” Judah said slowly. “I believe that […] But you can’t tell me that you’d do that to another person, no matter how tough things seemed—lock them up like that, imprison them—no matter how scared you were.”

“I don’t know,” I said. I thought of Carrie, of how brave she had been, and how fragile. I thought of the masks she wore to hide the terror and loneliness inside.

Page Number: 333-334
Explanation and Analysis:
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The Woman in Cabin 10 PDF

The Woman in Cabin 10/Carrie Character Timeline in The Woman in Cabin 10

The timeline below shows where the character The Woman in Cabin 10/Carrie appears in The Woman in Cabin 10. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 6
Perception vs. Reality Theme Icon
Wealth and Power Theme Icon
...whack in case they were hard of hearing.” The knocks are answered by a surprised young woman in a ratty Pink Floyd T-shirt. (full context)
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Lo asks if she can borrow some mascara, and the girl, flustered, gives her a tube and impatiently tells Lo not to bring it back, then... (full context)
Chapter 7
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...room, giving the impression of a dollhouse replica. She looks around for the Pink Floyd girl, but is interrupted by Cole Lederer, the award-winning photographer. He offers her a drink, which... (full context)
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...fellow journalists Tina West, Alexander Belhomme, and Archer Fenlan, but she doesn’t see the mysterious girl anywhere. Then she’s startled by Ben Howard, a writer whom she used to date. When... (full context)
Chapter 10
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...that Cabin 10 is completely empty. Lo insists that she saw and spoke with the girl who was staying there. Back in her own cabin, she shows him the borrowed mascara,... (full context)
Chapter 12
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...hairs showing through his latex gloves. Though the staff is polite, Lo doesn’t see the girl from Cabin 10 or hear any clues to her identity. (full context)
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Lo talks with spa therapist Eva and stewardess Ulla, but neither of them is the girl from Cabin 10, nor are they able to shed light on the girl’s identity. When... (full context)
Chapter 13
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...a solitary breakfast, she replays last night’s events and is not only sure that the girl was there, but that she had interrupted the girl in the middle of something. Despite... (full context)
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...that she heard something. What’s more, she knows “what it was like to be that girl—to realize, in an instant, how incredibly fragile your hold on life could be, how paper-thin... (full context)
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Lo sizes up Tina, too, wondering if she could have been involved in the girl’s disappearance. She asks, “Did you have a good time last night?” Tina shoots her a... (full context)
Chapter 15
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...passengers. Lo tells Ben she can’t stop dwelling on the horrible details about what the girl from Cabin 10 must have felt. Ben tells her not to let her imagination run... (full context)
Chapter 16
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While she naps, Lo dreams about the girl from Cabin 10—her dead body drifting far beneath the ocean’s surface. As Lo wakes up,... (full context)
Chapter 17
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...and Archer. In the photo, there’s also a waitress holding a tray of canapés—it’s the girl from Cabin 10. (full context)
Chapter 18
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Lo debates whether she should ask about the photo of the girl and risk Cole deleting the picture, if indeed he has something to hide. She ends... (full context)
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...that he saw a contact listed on Archer’s phone who looked a lot like the girl Lo described; she was even wearing a Pink Floyd shirt. Lo tries to Google Archer,... (full context)
Chapter 21
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...over the loss of his photos. Lo learns that the photo she’d seen of the girl from Cabin 10 was taken at an exclusive London club, the Magellan. (full context)
Chapter 22
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...cabin door. When she peered through the door’s peephole, Lo was stunned to see the woman from Cabin 10 standing there, “like nothing had ever happened.” (full context)
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...corridor away from her, Lo runs out of her room in pursuit. Just as the girl disappears through the staff door, Lo squeezes in behind her. It’s dark inside, and just... (full context)
Chapter 23
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...fitful sleep, unsure how much time is passing. She has a horrible nightmare about the girl from Cabin 10 peeling off her own clothes, hair, features, and finally her own skin,... (full context)
Entrapment and Isolation Theme Icon
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...Lo seemingly did not overhear a murder, as she had first thought—so who is the girl from Cabin 10, and why has she been hiding? Lo decides that, since the girl... (full context)
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...of medication withdrawal ever more apparent. But she feels a flood of anger towards the girl from Cabin 10 and clings to this like a lifeline. She realizes the girl has... (full context)
Chapter 24
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...she’s feeling the dizzying effects of medication withdrawal more and more. Feeling hateful toward the girl from Cabin 10, she breaks the food tray in half, producing two sharp-edged pieces. She... (full context)
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Lo spends most of that day fighting to keep herself awake. When the girl from Cabin 10 finally cracks the door open, Lo pounces, stabbing at the girl’s arm... (full context)
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The girl from Cabin 10 says that “he” would never let her release Lo. Before asking any... (full context)
Chapter 25
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The girl from Cabin 10 comes back with food, one pill, and a book for Lo to... (full context)
Chapter 26
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Stunned, Lo wonders how she had missed figuring out the identity of the girl from Cabin 10 earlier. She and Anne Bullmer have the same dark eyes and high... (full context)
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...on Cabin 10 that first evening. If she hadn’t, she might never have known the girl was there and would not have wound up in this situation. Lo continues to puzzle... (full context)
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...women, she can’t square what she knows about the wealthy, elegant Anne Bullmer with the girl in the Pink Floyd T-shirt. It’s as if there are two Annes. Then it suddenly... (full context)
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Lo realizes that Bullmer and the girl almost got away with their scheme. If she hadn’t been awakened by the splash that... (full context)
Chapter 27
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The next morning, the girl comes in with a breakfast tray, dressed as Anne. At first, she reacts fiercely when... (full context)
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The girl insists that she and Bullmer are in love. Lo seizes on this, pointing out that... (full context)
Chapter 28
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...in the room, fearing she’s failed in her quest to forge a connection with the girl. At some point, she senses that the Aurora’s engine has stopped. That means it must... (full context)
Chapter 29
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Lo spends seemingly ages waiting for the girl to reappear. It must be late Friday by now, and she’s terribly sick with hunger.... (full context)
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Lo asks the girl her name—it’s Carrie. Carrie gives Lo another pill. Because it’s the first time Carrie has... (full context)
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That night, Lo lies awake thinking over her conversation with Carrie and the need to secure Carrie’s help if she’s to escape. Until a few hours... (full context)
Chapter 30
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The next time Carrie appears with food, Lo gets her talking again, but refrains from asking too many questions... (full context)
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When Lo timidly touches Carrie’s knee, Carrie flinches, showing Lo “how frightened she was—how much of that vicious energy had... (full context)
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Carrie explains that she and Bullmer had carried on a secret affair until, one day, imitating... (full context)
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On the first night of the cruise, Bullmer had come to Carrie in Cabin 10 and told her that he and Anne had had a fight about... (full context)
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Listening to Carrie, Lo restrains herself from voicing objections to various holes in the story. It seems clear... (full context)
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Lo tells Carrie that Bullmer is going to kill them both, but that Carrie is capable of getting... (full context)
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Lo sees how guilt-stricken and afraid Carrie is and appeals to her conscience—Carrie doesn’t want another death weighing on her; she can... (full context)
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Lo briefly wonders if she’s developing Stockholm syndrome, but she realizes that, in any case, Carrie “had a considerably more advanced case than I did … we weren’t captor and captive,... (full context)
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After Carrie leaves, Lo spends the day pondering her fate and Carrie’s. She’s sure that Bullmer only... (full context)
Chapter 31
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Carrie tells Lo that they’ve got to get her off the boat. She’ll have to take... (full context)
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Lastly, to Lo’s horror, Carrie bashes her head against the side of the bunk, to make it look to Bullmer... (full context)
Chapter 32
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...11:15 at night, and Richard will be back any minute. She puts on some of Carrie’s street clothes underneath Anne’s kimono. She finds the wallet filled with money that Carrie had... (full context)
Chapter 33
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...of his. Lo asks him to phone the police for her; despite what she’d promised Carrie, she thinks it’s the only hope for both of them. (full context)
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...speaking in Norwegian to what sounds like the police. She’s briefly frozen, realizing that what Carrie had said about Richard’s influence wasn’t just paranoia. Lo slips quietly out the door. (full context)
Chapter 34
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As Lo continues walking, she thinks about Carrie’s warnings—which she’d dismissed as hysterical—about the reach of Bullmer’s influence. She now realizes Carrie was... (full context)
Chapter 37
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...night, Lo wakes up Judah with her crying. She says she can’t stop thinking about Carrie. Judah feels that Carrie deserves what she got, but Lo insists that nobody can know... (full context)
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...had been asked to identify Lo’s clothes, not a body. She can’t figure out why Carrie would have discarded her clothes. She also can’t imagine Bullmer committing suicide. But she pushes... (full context)