Customer Reviews for

Accidents of Providence

Average Rating 3.5
( 9 )
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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2012

    Accidents of Providence

    While I can appreciate the symbolism and attention to historical detail something was sorely lacking with Accidents of Providence. Sadly, I struggled with this title reading a few pages at a time and thinking to myself, maybe I should read something else.

    The book seems to ramble and repeat each chapter and the only breakup of the monotony are tossed in unexpected lust scenes, which at times were more ridiculous and laughable than anything. The romance and magnetism between characters didn’t seem believable. The characters were a little flat and not one could be considered enjoyable. Exciting events or any buildup had this annoying habit to abruptly stop because of some silly almost gimmicky cause. The ending was totally unbelievable, but I can understand the symbolism behind it (but it was still beyond absurd).

    All negative aspects aside, I loved this book’s descriptions of the grittiness and darkness of the 1600’s. This author has a gift to transport the reader to the deep recesses of this time period and hold you there with vivid descriptions of smallpox, Diggers, superstitions, squalid early prisons, public executions and the color of sea foam. I may read another book from this author because of her attention to detail and gift with descriptions; but please not another “hidden” romance.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 4, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Historical Fiction

    The year is 1649, the location London. Oliver Cromwell has defeated the King, Charles I, and religion now is the ruler of England. In this time and place, women are considered playthings of the Devil, and their wickedness must be controlled.

    One late night, Rachel Lockyer is observed by her employer burying something. The employer goes back the next morning and discovers a dead newborn. Rachel is arrested and the book follows her case. If a woman has a child out of wedlock, she can be stripped and flogged. If she names the father, he will join her in punishment. If the child is dead, the assumption is that the mother has murdered her child to avoid punishment. This is the assumption in Rachel's case, as she has steadfastly denied being pregnant, even when asked directly. Her lover was a married man, and she is not willing to have him punished.

    The book follows Rachel to Newgate Prison, a horrid place where prisoners must pay not to be attacked by guards and everyone is out for himself. The main investigator puts down the facts but something about the case bothers him. The trial is short and the outcome inevitable. As Rachel waits for her execution date, the story shifts to follow the man who was the father of her child, the political parties that want to use the case to further their complaints against the government by making Rachel a martyr, and Rachel's friends who try to save her.

    Stacia Brown has written a historical fiction novel that outlines the brutish lives of this time, and the brutish government that served to punish any perceived misconduct. All blame went to the woman, and men could ruin them with little fear of punishment. This book is recommended for readers who enjoy historical fiction as it is a real opening through which the reader can experience life in this time and age.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 7, 2012

    Disappointing after the great reviews :(

    I was really looking forward to reading this book after reading the reviews of it, but I found it to be dull and a little trite. I really couldn't finish it. An example of a much more engrossing and well-written book with fully-fleshed out characters would be "Year of Wonders" by Geraldine Brooks, which I highly recommend.

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  • Posted March 22, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I think that historical fiction is probably my favorite genre. I

    I think that historical fiction is probably my favorite genre. In relation to this book, it was not my favorite historical fiction book, but it did tell a good story. I felt that the characters were interesting and enjoyed reading about their lives. I think my favorite characters were Thomas Boatswain, the lawyer, and John Lilburne's wife, Elizabeth. Their charactes had such depth. I liked the fact that they were so complex as it helped to illustrate the class of people that they represented. It is always nice to find a well written book about everyday life in England.

    For me, though, historical fiction is not only about the story of the people, but about what I can learn about the time period in which the book was set. I was especially interested in learning about the Levellers, who, I admit, I had never heard of before reading this book. In addition, the author's depiction of life for women in England during this period was fascinating and enlightening. Lastly, the detail Rachel's trial and the legal workings surrounding her situation were interesting.

    I am giving this book 3 stars and would recommend it to friends.

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  • Posted February 21, 2012

    Well researched and written

    This is a deeply human, beautifully woven, and riveting story with rich and complicated characters. No one emerges a hero; no one is completely a villain. It seems to address the complexity of what we, as flawed human beings, both do and fail to do--and how this shapes our own lives and the lives of those around us. If you love historical fiction and excellent writing, this is a must read!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 8, 2012

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    Posted February 16, 2013

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 26, 2012

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