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Accidents Happen: A Novel by [Millar, Louise]
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Accidents Happen: A Novel Kindle Edition

3.6 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Kate Parker’s extraordinarily bad luck—both parents killed in a freak traffic accident on her wedding day, her husband murdered at home five years later—has left her wary about everything and overprotective of her 10-year-old son, Jack. Even her concerns about such warning flags as recent burglaries and a creepy neighbor’s behavior are considered just skittish Kate’s overreactions, especially by her in-laws, who threaten to raise Jack themselves. Kate’s sole and virtually obsessional solace lies in finding statistics showing the probability of danger in everyday life. So she’s instantly attracted to the book Beat the Odds and Change Your Life, left casually in a juice bar, and to its author, Jago Martin, an Edinburgh professor guest-lecturing at Oxford, who offers to help Kate deal with her anxiety. The risky activities Jago proposes actually make Kate feel alive again—the unlikely result of a pathological plan fueled by revenge. Fans of Millar’s accomplished debut, The Playdate (2012), won’t be surprised to find that things are not always what they seem here and that paranoia may indeed be just increased awareness. As Millar makes truth elusive and builds suspense, she is establishing herself in the top tier of writers of psychological thrillers. --Michele Leber


"'Millar is a genius at capturing the complicated emotions of parenthood, and her taut, suspenseful plot makes this an unputdownable read' Marie Claire 'A thought provoking, taut and suspenseful thriller that you won't forget in a hurry' Easy Living 'I started reading and couldn't stop... a must-read that will tap into every mother's primal fears' Sophie Hannah"

Product Details

  • File Size: 4059 KB
  • Print Length: 402 pages
  • Publisher: Atria/Emily Bestler Books (June 25, 2013)
  • Publication Date: June 25, 2013
  • Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00A28639W
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #576,734 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In "Accidents Happen", the central character, Kate, seems to attract bad luck whenever she goes. Her parents are murdered on her wedding day, her husband become a victim of thieves, her in-laws are concerned about her paranoia and want to take her only son, Jack, away from her. If all of these won't drive a woman crazy, then what will? Then she meets a handsome Scottish stranger and starts relaxing, just for a moment. But let's remember, if you are Kate, you can't relax even for a moment.

This is yet another excellent plot by Louise Millar. Her writing is amazing, she really grasps her characters, and makes them real to her readers. I am only amazed that Kate didn't start seeing a shrink much, much earlier in her marriage and later, right after her husband's death.

Hopefully, Hollywood wouldn't butcher a film based on this novel.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Under a dark cloud .... jinxed ..... cursed ..... unlucky. We have all heard these expressions, may have even experienced one or two along the way.

Kate Parker has been living .. or afraid of living ... for many years. Her parents died in a car accident on the day of her wedding. A few years later, her husband was murdered by a home invasion gang. Her house has been broken into ... twice. She feels like she's losing her mind and what's worse, she's making a nervous wreck of her young son.

There is so much to this story. The author does a great job presenting the psychological aspects. Kate meets a man who helps her get past her fears, but for someone so afraid of absolutely everything, it was hard to imagine that she would trust a stranger as much as she does.

Jago is a mystery himself. Is this meeting an accident ... coincidence ..... or is there something more sinister at work? Again, the author created a character that came to life under her pen.

All the tension seemed to come very close to the end, and then it felt very rushed. The actual ending was somewhat of a letdown.
This was an okay read to me ... I did want to keep reading to see what happened next .. I knew something was coming ... just not what.

3.5 Stars

My thanks to NetGalley / Atria Books who furnished a digital copy in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Kate, a thirty-something widow suffers with an anxiety disorder and OCD. She constantly checks the odds of a catastrophe happening since the break-in and murder of her husband five years ago. Jack, her almost-eleven year old son appears to mimicking her fears and developing his own anxieties. But, Kate and Jack do have a phantom intruder, their next door neighbor who enters crawling through a hole he's carved straight into Jack's closet! In the interim, Kate finds herself attracted to Jago, professor and writer of a book about odds and statistics. She also has to contend with her in-laws threats to take Jack.
Unlike Millar's first novel, PLAYDATE, ACCIDENTS HAPPEN didn't grab me. I wasn't on the edge of my chair and I was able to put the book down. I think PLAYDATE set high expectation for Millar's sophomore novel. I liked, but didn't love this novel. I felt like Millar could have easily created more tension by capitalizing on Kate's anxiety disorder, but instead of describing all the body's responses to panic, she glossed over this. Still, I enjoyed this novel and I give it a lukewarm recommendation.
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Format: Paperback
This was an interesting book to read, a combination of mystery and psychological thriller. The author, Louise Millar, did a very good job of establishing all of the psychological problems of her lead character and the build up of the tension leading to the final scenes was done in an excellent manner. I was certainly wanting Kate Parker to manage to find some help in coping with the issues caused by all the trauma in her past. Kate had developed methods to keep her from coming to terms with the deaths of both her parents in a car accident and her husband from a home invasion and robbery. Unfortunately simply trying to ignore the underlying cause of her mental instability was not helping her to recover and was actually beginning to make her eleven year old son exhibit some anxiety symptoms of his own. Of much more interest to me were the characters of Saskia, Kate's sister-in-law, and the truly strange man who lived next door to Kate. The man Kate met, Jago Martin, was a well portrayed character and I could understand how someone as mentally fragile as Kate would have been attracted to him. From the standpoint of being a thriller I would say the novel was a success.

Unfortunately this novel began to be less of an enjoyable read when the author asked me to accept too many major changes in Kate's life in too short a time span. Issues such as Kate's which had been in complete control of her life needed more time to be resolved instead of simply meeting a man and being attracted to him. Kate began to seem to simply do whatever bizarre thing this man dictated with not much more than an OK. I think if the author could have made the circumstances play out over a longer period of time it would have been much easier for me to accept that Kate had made such dramatic changes in her thinking and actions.

This book was provided to me at no charge by the publisher. The opinions expressed are my own.
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