The Accident Season

Magic and reality spin and blur in this lyrical YA debut novel set in small-town Ireland. Irish author Moïra Fowley-Doyle weaves a deliciously dark story of a family who pads the kitchen-counter corners every time the "accident season" rolls around... because someone is bound to get hurt.

"Bones break, skin tears, bruises bloom": the accident season starts on October 1 and ends on Halloween. Sometimes someone just gets scratched up a little, but occasionally someone dies. Seventeen-year-old Cara walks around with "the vague aroma of echinacea and anxiety" following her "like a strange sad cloud," and her best friend, Bea, doesn't help with her gloomy tarot-card predictions of a particularly bad October. Seemingly on cue, Cara's older sister, Alice, has fallen down the stairs, and their paranoid, purple-haired mother has asked 89 times if she's okay. Uncertainty churns. Is the accident season real, or just... accidents? Why has a mousy forgotten friend named Elsie appeared in all of Cara's pictures for the last 17 years? And, most excruciating of all, how can Cara possibly not kiss her irresistible ex-stepbrother, Sam, even though it seems so taboo? The mysteries of the accident season are unveiled as awful family secrets spill out, and the electric energy of all the undercurrents crescendos into a wild, wine-soaked Halloween party in an old, abandoned house where guests are encouraged to "come as what you feel like on the inside."

Bones, bridges and hearts break in this literary, mesmerizingly sensual novel of flashbacks, dreams and Halloween surprises. --Karin Snelson, children's editor, Shelf Awareness

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