by Moïra Fowley-Doyle
Published by: Penguin Random House
Narrator: Colby Minifie
Length: 7 hours and 24 minutes
Genres: Magical Realism, Paranormal
Purchase: Amazon | Audible
Every October Cara and her family become inexplicably and unavoidably accident-prone. Some years it's bad, like the season when her father died, and some years it's just a lot of cuts and scrapes. This accident season--when Cara, her ex-stepbrother, Sam, and her best friend, Bea, are 17--is going to be a bad one. But not for the reasons they think. Cara is about to learn that not all the scars left by the accident season are physical: There's a long-hidden family secret underneath the bumps and bruises. This is the year Cara will finally fall desperately in love, when she'll start discovering the painful truth about the adults in her life, and when she'll uncover the dark origins of the accident season--whether she’s ready or not.
The Accident Season by Moïra Fowley-Doyle was not on my radar until I read a review from a fellow blogger. Then an opportunity to review the audio version with Colby Minifie reading presented itself and I jumped. I am so delighted that I did so as the Accident Season was beautiful, dark, mysterious, and quirky.
“It’s the accident season, the same time every year. Bones break, skin tears, bruises bloom.”
Five reasons to listen to The Accident Season
- The premise: Every October Cara and her family have unexplained accidents. Some years they escape with cuts, bruises, and broken bones but other years are dark like the season their father died. Fowley-Doyle shares this season and takes us on one heck of a ride where accidents are not the only problems facing this family. Besides the mystery of the accident season, this is a tale of secrets, forbidden love, friendship, sisters, family and coming of age.
- The writing/language: The writing was delightful; if I read the Accident Season, I would have highlighted everything. Fowley-Doyle has this magical way of describing feelings and painting scenery. As Colby Minifie read, I found myself slipping into the story as the lyrical, often-haunting words flowed. I can hardly believe this is a début novel.
- The characters: Colorful and quirky from Mom’s purple hair to their different personalities. Each of the siblings intrigued me. The siblings, Cara, her sister Alice, and their ex-stepbrother Sam are incredibly close; in part because of the accident season. Their friend Bea is a tad eccentric from her tarot cards to her vividly witchy imagination. I easily connected with all of them and their actions and personalities felt realistic. The bond between this family and group of friends felt genuine and the way they came together during the accident season endeared me to them.
- The story: The story comes to us from Cara and at times, she was an unreliable narrator. This added to the overall suspense and creepiness as the story unfolded. Was the accident season real? Moreover, what was causing it? Bea and her incredible gift at spinning tales gave us a haunting atmosphere. The author takes us through their mundane lives and the complications created by the season from school to parties. She skillful shows the risks youth take even with the threat of danger. We see the believers and the naysayers of the family and wonder ourselves even as the hair on the back of our neck rises. We experience love, heartache, jealousy, friendship and their fears.
- A standalone: We get a fully developed story that was fast paced, and wholly original. I loved the blending of paranormal and magical realism. As the story progressed, it became more complex with twists and turns that kept me listening. I found the story delightful from its creepy mystery to the sweet romance. The climactic ending was action-packed and had me holding my breath. I worried that we would be left with questions, but the author tied up threads and delivered an ending that satisfied me.
The Accident Season was a beautiful twisted and unique thriller whose characters and prose held me captive.
“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.”
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
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