Customer Reviews for

The Accidental

Average Rating 3.5
( 7 )
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  • Posted April 9, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Stick With Short Stories, Ali Smith.

    Though I absolutely adored Ali Smith's short story collection entitled _The First Person_, I was very disappointed in _The Accidental_, which was the first novel of hers that I've read.

    The ending made very little sense to me, but neither did most of the actual story! I found the book frustrating and, often, annoying. The characters were deep and believable, and many of the issues she brings up are very topical and could be fascinating, but there are so many disjointed, confusing, and totally unbelievable situations and storylines that the book just fall apart.

    Smith's an excellent short-story writer but I believe she shouldn't write novels without an editor who will pare everything down and get rid of unnecessary information. About 2/3 of the time, this novel read like someone's stream of consciousness practice for a basic creative writing course. Shame!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 25, 2007


    After all the hype and awards this book has received, I couldnt wait to start this. I have tried for weeks to attempt to read this and simply put, I couldnt stand it. the flow of the book is atrocious and the main character Ambers thoughts/actions seem almost schizophrenic and impossible to follow-do find yourself thinking are these ramblings happening now or it in all in her mind? I read at least two books a week and this by far has been the worst let down. The book rambles, and has no flow to the story line. If you must try it for yourself, check it out at the library-dont waste your money!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 5, 2006


    Outstanding performances by a superb ensemble cast add luster to this intriguing, richly imagined story of a family on tender hooks, stripped of pretense following the arrival of an unexpected visitor. The Smarts, a family whose home is London, have rented a cottage for the summer. They're surprised late one afternoon by a knock on the door - it is a beautiful, barefoot thirty-something woman who calls herself Amber. By dint of charm and determination she enters the home, and remains for much longer than dinner. She's a sham, yet she manages to turn the entire family on its collective ears. Actress Heather O'Neill is by turning winning and wanton, especially effective in the monologues that give some insight into what occupies Amber's mind. Simon Prebble, he of the easy-on-the-ears tenor voice and British accent, is the perfect choice for Michael, the rather haughty head of the household. A professor, he is self-absorbed to the point that he misses the throes of those closest to him. Michael can be so remote that all he knows of Amber is that she had car trouble. Eve, his wife, is almost driven to distraction with worry about the completion and success of her latest literary effort. It's her belief that Amber is one of Michael's former lovers who has followed them here, perhaps to make trouble between husband and wife. Actress Ruth Moore reflects Eve's simmering emotions with chaste diction. There are two young ones in the Smart household. Magnus, as performed by Jeff Woodman, is almost a basket case due to guilt and fear. An ill-conceived prank of his has backfired, and he suffers for it. He's 17, on the brink of manhood, yet terrified of becoming adult. Astrid, is a 12-year-old half-child, half-woman who is by turns acerbic and angelic. She is ably read by Stina Nielsen. As presented by these talented performers 'The Accidental' is theater t its best. Treat yourself! - Gail Cooke

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    Posted June 3, 2013

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    Posted January 10, 2009

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    Posted January 12, 2009

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    Posted December 9, 2010

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