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By Accident: A Novel
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By Accident: A Novel

3.14  ·  Rating Details ·  84 Ratings  ·  11 Reviews

A grieving mother finds solace from her son’s death in a relationship that quickly blurs the line between friendship and intimacy.

By Accident portrays a year in the life of a woman after the accidental death of her teenage son. Laura Lucas is numbed by the loss, a loss that is paralleled in the spate of upscale construction—and attendant destruction—in her starter-
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published May 5th 2010 by Pegasus
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Karen Skinner
Nov 03, 2011 Karen Skinner rated it really liked it
Her teen aged son dies in a car accident on his way to their summer vacation rental, the last summer before he leaves for college. I almost put the book away then because I have a son and I couldn't bear the weight my own empathy. But the author sucked me in with her pure, authentic recitation of what loss like that robs you of, and leaves you with. Then a plot started to peek through like the sun on a mostly cloudy, rainy day. I stayed, for the possibilities and I was rewarded with a raw portra ...more
Marnie Kaplan
May 03, 2012 Marnie Kaplan rated it liked it
I just finished this book abuzz with thoughts. By Accident is a story about a family coping with the accidental death of their son, a teenager, who was set to embark on the next stage of his life. The novel begins with Whit's graduation from boarding school. And thus the beginning of the story is a beginning for Whit. I found it harrowing to know what was coming. We are introduced to Whit through his mother's eyes and so the reader views him as larger than life. He is the first born, who will se ...more
May 17, 2010 Angela rated it liked it
Laura Lucas is grieving the death of her son, who should have been college bound in the fall. She grieves as an island - isolated and disconnected from everything and everyone she used to love. Then she and her daughter, Ebie, meet the young man next door and Laura begins to show signs of life again. By Accident examines relationships between men and women, husbands and wives, parents and children.

By Accident is beautifully written. I could feel the heaviness of Laura's grief and her frustration
Jul 09, 2010 Joanne rated it it was amazing
I thought By Accident was a lovely telling of a tragic situation, with such honesty and detail I felt the characters emotions myself. I thought it was realistic, honest, emotional and well written. I loved the ending, and the intermittent chapters told from a different point of view than the main character's first person point of view. I will look for other books by this author to read based on my experience with this book.
Apr 10, 2012 Annette rated it really liked it
Painful and real, to read of Laura's loss. This book was filled with the ambiguity, raw beauty and, pain that sums up life.
Attachment brings grief. A lot of truth in that statement. And the loss of a child brings the greatest pain and grief imaginable.
The book was beautifully written, the characters well drawn and real, the emotion almost breathtaking at times.
Nov 10, 2010 Aubrey rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I don't know if I just wasn't in the mood to read a book with so much reflection in it or if it really was boring. I found myself skimming over pages where the author would go on and on about her thoughts....looking at a tree and comparing it to her life, etc. So I don't know...I should probably just give it 1 star cause I really wouldn't recommend it to another soul....
Becky Morlok
Jun 01, 2010 Becky Morlok rated it it was ok
I grew up with Susan and, (like everyone), adored her father who she dedicated the book to. Of her works this is my least favorite most likely due to topic. I love reading her descriptions of folks and locations, etc. from childhood.
Jul 11, 2012 Verena rated it liked it
Solid story
Rita Roitman
Jan 12, 2011 Rita Roitman rated it it was ok
Jan 19, 2012 Ellie rated it it was amazing
I thought this book was great. It was interestingly written, tackled a tough subject matter, and kept me engrossd the entire time.
Jul 02, 2010 Sue rated it did not like it
I really didn't like this book, I should have just taken it back to the library without finishing it. i didn't like the morals in the story or the way it ended.
Ms. Jared
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I've lived most of my life in North Carolina, and have set my books here, at both the mountains and the beaches. I have a BA in English from UNC-Chapel Hill and a Masters of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from Warren Wilson's Program for Writers. Warner Books published my first two novels (believe it: the first one, HOW CLOSE WE COME, won a contest and got picked up by the big boys) and Pegausus Bo ...more
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