I was so eager to read this book, and I have to say there were parts that exceeded my expectations, and there were parts I thought were disappointing. It is what I would call a beautiful nightmare of a read – you know that scene in Labrynth where Sarah is dancing in the ball and all those scary gorgeous bird mask people are twirling around her? That is what this book feels like. Overall, I was pretty fascinated, but I think some readers will be a bit disappointed with the plot. I gave it four stars, and if you like pretty and macabre things you will probably agree.
It’s the accident season, the same time every year. Bones break, skin tears, bruises bloom.
The accident season has been part of seventeen-year-old Cara’s life for as long as she can remember. Towards the end of October, foreshadowed by the deaths of many relatives before them, Cara’s family becomes inexplicably accident-prone. They banish knives to locked drawers, cover sharp table edges with padding, switch off electrical items – but injuries follow wherever they go, and the accident season becomes an ever-growing obsession and fear.
But why are they so cursed? And how can they break free?
This book is one where you have to appreciate style over substance, and if you can do that, you are going to be delighted – dance around the bonfire with goblins and drink fairy wine delighted – because this is one creepy beautiful read. The blurb compared it to When We Were Liars, and that isn’t a bad comparison, but I was in no way prepared for the dreamlike quality of the prose or the chilling visions it evoked. The Accident Season is When We Were Liars if it were read aloud to you in a sweet girlish whisper by a scary porcelain doll. The imagery flickers between ethereal beauty and seductive nightmare – haunting and vivid. The plot, however, wouldn’t be terribly impressive without all the mermaid scales and dusty footprints in deserted ballrooms. The premise is intriguing, but plot points were pretty easy to anticipate. I saw every shocking surprise long before it was revealed, AND I DIDN’T CARE! The point of this book is to twirl around in your pretty costume at the masquerade until you are giddy, dizzy, and making out with . . . well, whoever. However, you need to be prepared to wipe the vomit off your slippers in the morning. There are some ugly things swimming in the lovely murk, real things that ultimately rise to the surface. I enjoyed this book. I read it straight through in a single sitting and stayed up way past my bed time because I knew I couldn’t sleep until I finished. I think some readers will struggle with it because the prose is so fanciful, but I thought it was magical and dark in all the best of ways.
I received an ARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.