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BOOK REVIEW: The Accident Season by Moïra Fowley-Doyle

| 19 November 2015 | Reply

BOOK REVIEW: The Accident Season by Moïra Fowley-Doyle

Corgi Childrens
August 2015
Paperback, £5.99
Reviewed by Aly Locatelli




There are no ghosts; only the dust in the light, our breath and the wind in the quiet, and the feeling that something, or a lot of somethings, are watching us. So maybe there are ghosts after all.

Deliciously creepy and wonderfully curious, The Accident Season is definitely the perfect autumnal read. The author did an excellent job of making the story odd enough to give the reader chills but also making it flawed enough to have them second-guess themselves from the very first page.

Seventeen-year-old Cara and her family are cursed. Near the end of October, “the accident season” begins to work and accidents happen.


Accidents happen. Our bones shatter, our skin splits, our hearts break. We burn, we drown, we stay alive.

Sometimes, people die. The Accident Season took more than one of Cara’s family members away, and the family grows more accident prone as a consequence. Cara’s sister is hit by a car, Cara almost drowns, their stepbrother, Sam, breaks more bones than is deemed normal — and every year, they try their hardest to survive. Cara’s mother goes overboard every year: padding the house from top to bottom, removing the cooker and sharp utensils (or anything sharp, really) and making sure each kid wears at least three protective layers before leaving the house. They must avoid everything that could cause them harm, and if there’s no way around it (for example, crossing the road) they must, at all cost, do it together.

But this year is different: Cara, after going through old family photo albums, finds that one person is always present in the pictures. A young girl called Elsie, whom Cara has known since childhood, and Cara is convinced that if she confronts Elsie, she will find the answers to the accident season.

Except Elsie is missing. No one seems to remember her, or even recall what she looked like. This year’s accident season is about to be the messiest one yet.

What made The Accident Season creepy was, firstly, the writing style. Fowley-Doyle has a way with words that makes you feel like you’re floating, like everything is, in fact, ghostly and otherworldly. There’s nothing simplistic about her style, especially when it comes to describing abandoned houses. It’s entrancing and addicting and hard not to get sucked into this Ireland.

Secondly, the characters are what made the story so wonderfully poignant and curious. Cara, Alice and Sam are a perfect trio: they would do anything for each other and love to indulge each other’s wild fantasies. Each characters, although always narrated by Cara, has their own personality, something that distinguishes them from each other, and each characters has secrets they would do anything to keep hidden.

I was swept up by the author’s writing, her descriptions of Ireland, and every scene left me with a dry mouth and a racing heart. I absolutely adored the romance, how “taboo” it seemed (in both cases) and how it didn’t eclipse Cara’s race in finding out the truth about her family, Elsie, and the past accident seasons. And no matter the romance, the book focused a lot on relationships in general, and it was very We Were Liars and The Perks of Being a Wallflower in this regard. It was very different, very wonderful, just deliciously amazing.

The best way to describe this book would be: slightly ghostly, incredibly creepy and with a huge dose of mind-blowing plot twists ready to give unsuspecting readers headaches. Good headaches. The Accident Season is the sort of book you can’t (and won’t) stop thinking about for a long, long time.

Category: Book Reviews, Other Reviews

About the Author ()

21. A reader, a writer, a reviewer and a full-time sloth lover. I am addicted to coffee and my laptop, and love reading especially when it's rainy outside.

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