Favorite Quotes on Books and Reading

"A book is a gift you can open again and again." Garrison Keillor

Literature is a textually transmitted disease, normally contracted in childhood.” Jane Yolen

"It is what you read when you don't have to that determines what you will be when you can't help it." Oscar Wilde

"Books have furnished, burnished, and enabled my life." Julia Keller

Sunday, July 7, 2013


Accidents Happen by Louise Millar
ISBN:  9781451656701 (paperback)
ISBN:  9781451656725 (ebook)
ASIN:  B00A28639W (Kindle edition)
Publication date: June 25, 2013 
Publisher: Atria/Emily Bestler Books

Kate Parker has weathered unimaginable horrors—her parents died in a traffic accident on her wedding night, and her husband, Hugo, was murdered in a tragic break-in gone wrong. All she has left is her young son, Jack, and determined to make a better future for him, she attempts to pull her life back together. But are she and her son safe?

To say that Kate Parker is paranoid and slightly obsessed with accident prevention is a major understatement. She had just recovered emotionally and psychologically from her parents' tragic car accident on her wedding night when she was dealt another blow, the murder of her husband in a home invasion/car theft. She decided to leave London behind and move to Oxford in order to be closer to her in-laws and provide a safer life for her son, Jack. Unfortunately Kate has become her own worst enemy in the eyes of her in-laws as a result of her paranoia. Will she be able to overcome her tendencies and continue to protect her family?

In an effort to stem any further accidents or incidents happening in her life, Kate has become obsessed with calculating the odds of an accident before taking any action. She calculates odds before driving in her car, riding her bicycle, or even walking any great distance. Kate feels that her calculations help avoid trouble and keep her safe. After a burglary at the house in Oxford, she opts to install a gate upstairs, effectively locking herself and her son behind bars every night. Her in-laws feel that this is the final straw and give her an ultimatum, take appropriate action to overcome her obsessions or they'll pursue having her declared unfit and take their grandson away from her. As Kate struggles with this ultimatum, she somewhat fortuitously meets Professor Jago Martin, author of the book Beat the Odds and Change Your Life. Kate feels that Jago is a lifesaver and allows him to persuade her into some strange acts in order to overcome her obsessions. Just when Kate starts to feel slightly more in control, she realizes that all is not what it appears with Jago. Is this more of her paranoia at work or is something really wrong?

I found Accidents Happen to be a somewhat difficult read at first. Not because the story wasn't intriguing, but because I initially found Kate's reactions to be somewhat farfetched  However the more I read the more involved I became with Kate, Jack and their problems. I was concerned about Kate's obsessions and the effect they were having on her son, but realized there was no way she could be who she was without it impacting her son. I was a little disappointed that Kate never really received any psychological or psychiatric help for her issues. Once I was pulled into the story and got to the end, I quickly realized that Kate's actions weren't as farfetched as I initially thought. The ending was completely unexpected and strained credulity (in my opinion) more than Kate and her behavior. Having said that, I found Accidents Happen was actually a good psychological thriller read.

Read an excerpt here

Disclaimer: I received a digital copy of this book free for review purposes from the publisher via NetGalley. I was not paid, required or otherwise obligated to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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