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Gwendolyn Smith | Contributing Writer | Monday, 3 August 2015

Why You Need To Drop All Your Plans And Read ‘The Accident Season’ Immediately

Drop All Your Plans And Read ‘The Accident Season’ Immediately

The Debrief: Make space on your bookshelf for this eerie debut

Don’t get me wrong, I love stretching out under the summer sun with a benign beach read as much as anyone else. But for those moments when you’re looking to read about something a tad more compelling than how Emma’s stomach jumped when Barry got *that* glint in his eye, author Moïra Fowley-Doyle’s edgy first novel is worth checking out.

Titled The Accident Season, it follows the tale of 17-year-old Cara and her kooky friends and family. For one month a year, they’re subjected to a strange series of accidents that appear to be unavoidable. And we’re not just talking about that wine glass, er, nudging itself off the kitchen table at your mate’s party/being stabbed in the eye by a mascara wand. Sharp knives are locked away in drawers and the poor girl’s kitchen is covered in bubble wrap and other mishap-proof padding. Yep. 

If not being able to whack out a pan of pesto pasta when the whim takes you wasn’t bad enough (pretty necessary facility for some of us), there’s also the small matter of being in love with a guy who might as well prance around with a sign that reads ‘OFF LIMITS’ on his forehead. Oh, and there’s a dark casket of family secrets stealthily creaking open in the background. Yeah, I don’t really fancy being Cara either.

Understandably sick of spending a portion of the year covered in bruises/unable to make the aforementioned pesto pasta (this is a side-effect of the kitchen being covered in bubble wrap that I have imagined; Italian cuisine doesn’t have its own sub-plot or anything), Cara sets out to try to free her family from the accidents once and for all. And as you might expect, it’s hardly a drama-free undertaking.

Look out for…

Some great LGBT stuff

The Accident Season certainly doesn’t shy away from recounting romantic relationships. And the great thing is that whomever these fizz up between, love and attraction are depicted in a realistic and chilled-out way. All Young Adult books should take note.

Serious suspense

The book creeps several notches up the creep-ometer as Cara begins to realize that deaths of certain relatives are more complicated than she initially believed. And you might find it advisable to read the chapters set in a derelict (read ‘haunted’) house with one eye squeezed shut and all of the lights in your flat flicked resolutely on. Just saying.

A party worthy of a Skins episode

Ever felt like the nights of debauchery showcased in Skins/The OC/Gossip Girl make your own parties feel so uncool in comparison that you might as well have handed out goody bags stuffed with Monster Munch at the end/ permitted your dad to police guests at the front door? (If no, then please do send over your address upon finishing reading this article).

Well, Cara and her pals are worried that their Halloween bash is going to be a bit of a flop too, but then there’s the more-than-slightly-redeeming detail of holding it in a deserted ‘ghost’ house and guests having access to a medically unsound quantity of alcohol that leads to people basically referring to the night as the party of the season.

Watch out for Cara’s swoonsome-sounding outfit/a pleasing amount of traditional house party heavy petting. Although it’s obviously not described as ‘heavy petting’ in the book because Fowley-Doyle is a professional and can make carnal activities sound sexy rather than like a pregnancy-inducing thing one needs to refrain from doing when visiting swimming pools during the spring half-term.

A pretty steamy sex scene

As a self-identifying connoisseur of lovemaking in literature (probs why my CV is getting me nowhere), I was impressed by Fowley-Doyle’s portrayal of teen sex experiences. Scenes are sensual, intense and – most importantly - focus on female pleasure. Woop woop.

The Accident Season is out now. Pick yourself up a copy here.

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What Your Holiday Read Says About You

All The Best Books From Orange Is The New Black Season Three

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