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3.84  ·  Rating details ·  329 ratings  ·  97 reviews
This timely, emotionally-resonant story about a teen girl dealing with the aftermath of a tragic shooting is a must-read from an exciting new YA talent.

Johanna has had more than enough trauma in her life. She lost her mom in a car accident, and her father went AWOL when Johanna was just a baby. At sixteen, life is steady, boring . . . maybe even stifling, since she's being
Hardcover, 368 pages
Published July 7th 2020 by Bloomsbury YA
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Average rating 3.84  · 
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 ·  329 ratings  ·  97 reviews

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Jul 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya, 2020, edelweiss2020
Sixteen year old Joanna Carlson is a typical teenager. She likes music, fashion, and spending time with her best friends Gabby and Leah whom she's known since they went to the kindergarten. Joanna was adopted by her grandparents thirteen years ago when her mother was killed in a car accident. Her grandparents never speak about her mom, which is a bit unusual, and Jo can't remember anything from the time.
Out of blue her estranged father Robert Newton contacts Joanna and would like to see her for
Actual Rating: 4.5 Stars

Disclaimer: This book was sent to me by the publisher, Bloomsbury, for an honest review.


“𝑨𝒍𝒍 𝒘𝒆𝒆𝒌 𝒍𝒐𝒏𝒈, 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝑨𝒎𝒆𝒓𝒊𝒄𝒂𝒏 𝒇𝒍𝒂𝒈 𝒐𝒏 𝒐𝒖𝒓 𝒇𝒓𝒐𝒏𝒕 𝒍𝒂𝒘𝒏 𝒇𝒍𝒂𝒑𝒔 𝒂𝒏𝒈𝒓𝒊𝒍𝒚 𝒊𝒏 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒘𝒊𝒏𝒅. 𝑾𝒆𝒊𝒓𝒅 𝒉𝒐𝒘 𝑰 𝒏𝒆𝒗𝒆𝒓 𝒖𝒔𝒆𝒅 𝒕𝒐 𝒏𝒐𝒕𝒊𝒄𝒆 𝒊𝒕 𝒖𝒑 𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓𝒆 – 𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒔 𝒉𝒖𝒈𝒆, 𝒅𝒖𝒓𝒂𝒃𝒍𝒆 𝒂𝒅 𝒇𝒐𝒓 𝒐𝒖𝒓 𝒑𝒂𝒕𝒓𝒊𝒐𝒕𝒊𝒔𝒎.
𝑰 𝒘𝒐𝒏𝒅𝒆𝒓 𝒊𝒇 𝒎𝒚 𝒈𝒓𝒂𝒏𝒅𝒑𝒂𝒓𝒆𝒏𝒕𝒔 𝒐𝒘𝒏𝒆𝒅 𝒕𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒇𝒍𝒂𝒈 𝒃𝒆𝒇𝒐𝒓𝒆 𝒐𝒓 𝒂𝒇𝒕𝒆𝒓 𝑰 𝒔𝒉𝒐𝒕 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒌𝒊𝒍𝒍𝒆𝒅 𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒊𝒓 𝒅𝒂𝒖𝒈𝒉𝒕𝒆𝒓.”


“𝑩𝒍𝒊𝒏𝒌 𝒕𝒘𝒊𝒄𝒆 𝒊𝒇 𝒚𝒐𝒖’𝒓𝒆 𝒕𝒓𝒂𝒑𝒑𝒆𝒅 𝒊𝒏 𝒂 𝒉𝒐𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒍𝒆 𝒔𝒊𝒕𝒖𝒂𝒕𝒊𝒐𝒏.”

Johanna has been raised by her grandparents for most of her lif
Paula M
I'm giving away a copy of this book HERE and its OPEN INTERNATIONALLY!

[trigger warning: gun violence]

"Not anymore, though. Hell, no. This is about me. It is my story. Because of my past, I will make sure my future is different."

Accidental is such a refreshing read, a book that I can confidently say we don't encounter much. Don't you just admire authors that are brave enough to weave a story that includes heavy and tough subjects about todays society? I personally think we should stop
PinkAmy loves books, cats and naps
Every once in a while, a few times a year if you read as many books as me, a book comes along that takes my breath away. Book lovers know what I’m talking about. Some stories grab you by the heart and pull you inside the words as if you’re feeling the emotions of the narrator.

ACCIDENTAL was one of my most anticipated books of 2020 and it surpassed my hopeful expectations.

I’ve made no secret that I hate guns and have since I was a kid. My high school had a gun club, and my classmates stored their
Jun 14, 2020 rated it liked it
Thank you Netgalley and Bloomsbury USA Childrens Book for providing an ARC of Accidental in exchange for an honest review.

Accidental by Alex Richard's is about Johanna who has grown up living with her grandparents because her mother died in a car accident when she was young. Johanna father has decided not to be in her life until now day he gets in contact with her and breaks some devastating news she did not see coming.

Accidental deals with issues such as father daughter issues, school issues
Many thanks to EdelweissPlus and the publisher for providing me with a DRC of this title for review. All opinions are my own.

Actual rating rounded up to a 3.5.

OK-this had the premise to be an amazing and gut-wrenching read (most of my recent reads have fallen into the category of "I'm for sure going to be crying at the end and I don't even feel bad about it" types of stories) and this was along the same vein. Johanna is a junior at a small private school, trying to figure out getting into Parson
Sarah {The Clever Reader}
Jul 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Johanna has a pretty good life living with her grandparents, hanging out with her best friends, and now she even has a boyfriend! Until one day when her father shows up & turns her world upside down!
When Johanna finds out her mother didn’t die in a car accident but that she accidentally shot her with an unsecured firearm she is left reeling. How could her grandparents lie to her?
Will she ever be able to forgive herself for what she did? This book will take you on a journey through the emotions
Liz Lawson
Jan 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing
One of my most anticipated debuts of the year! Johanna is a fantastic protagonist, and I was drawn into her world from page 1. Accidental is an important, necessary story told with humor and a spot-on voice.

Richards tackles issues of gun violence with a deft hand, weaving an important message into a heartbreaking, powerful story about loss and hope.
Stay Fetters
Aug 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
”An uncluttered mind is a peaceful mind. You’ll hurt yourself, keeping it all pent up."

The statistics for gun violence is staggering. Over 25,000 people this year alone have died from gun violence. The scary part is that the number doesn’t include people injured by a gunshot and the year isn’t over quite yet. It’s heartbreaking that this is the world we’re living in.

Imagine hearing a devastating story about your Moms death and then finding out it was all a lie. Come to find out, you had some pa
Samantha (WLABB)
Jun 23, 2020 rated it really liked it
They said it was an accident that killed her mother - a car accident, but after 13 years, Johanna learns the truth. Though she doesn't remember it, she was responsible for her mother's death. Reeling from this bombshell, she must work through her emotions regarding her role in her mother's death, the lies her grandparents told her, and the return of the father she never knew.

When I first read the synopsis for this book, I thought about how tragic the situation was and then tried to imagine what
Pavitra (For The Love of Fictional Worlds)

Disclaimer: An eARC was provided via Publisher and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. The Thoughts, opinions & feelings expressed in the review are therefore, my own.

When I read the blurb of the book; I couldn’t hit request hard enough – the blurb made Accidental sound like a book that will break your heart and yet leave you with hope at the end of reading the book!

In Accidental; Johanna is living the typical teenage life with her conservative grandparents – she has her tribe, two
Jun 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing
What would happen if you discovered you were the reason your mother was dead? That’s exactly what Josephine learns in Accidental. It’s a heartbreaking novel about family, death, grief, uncontrollable emotions, huge letdowns, and broken relationships, yet it is also about learning to breath again, hanging onto those friendships, mending relationships and letting go of others, about making a difference, fall in love and even making out.

Jo has always missed her mother, but respected the boundaries
Jul 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I won this book through a Goodreads giveaway.
Such a sad story to read about, but it really makes you think about all the gun violence in the world and how many accidents happen because of gun.
My family always had so many guns because they're hunters. My dad always made sure they were locked up tight and they weren't loaded for fear of anything happening to me and my siblings or even my mother pr himself. I couldn't fathom being a child that accidentally shot their own mother or family member
Jan 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
ACCIDENTAL is both a rallying cry and a challenge; it demands to be read, and refuses to be put down. By spotlighting the violence and attitudes that surround gun control in America, ACCIDENTAL explores the everyday fear that has become part of the American high school curriculum. This book is haunting, but it is also hopeful. As Johanna explores the ramifications of gun violence on her life, she also steps into the realm of first boyfriends, first loves, forever friends, and most importantly, f ...more
Olivia Wildenstein
May 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The speed at which I read ACCIDENTAL is a testament to how riveting and gorgeously written it was.

There are all the ingredients necessary to a satisfying teen book: passionate friendships, sweet romance (Milo was the cutest), love/hate relationship with one's family, bullying, school drama. But what makes this book exceptional is the subject matter it deals with—GUNS—and the delicate manner Richards has of showing a true societal problem.

ACCIDENTAL isn't a call-to-arms; it's a reminder not to b
May 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing
*This book was sent to me by the publisher to give an honest review in return*

This is a powerful and emotional book and the author nailed it with the story. This book was just wonderful and the author did an amazing job tackling the talk about gun violence, losing family, friends, and yourself, plus talking about emotional problems. I was hooked with this book from page 1 because the way the author describes the plot and scenes were very descriptive so it wasn't at all hard for the reader to thi
Shelf Blame
Jul 18, 2020 rated it liked it
Thank you NetGalley and Bloomsbury YA for the digital ARC of Accidental by Alex Richards!

Accidental follows Johanna, a teenager raised by her grandparents after her mother was tragically killed in a car accident - or so she thinks. The truth is revealed when Johanna's absentee father barrels back into her life and lays it on her: Johanna accidentally killed her mother as a toddler when she found her father's gun.

This book takes a hard look at gun violence in the US, and how in addition to stree
Nora Carpenter
May 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Prepare for feelings, readers. If you've read the description, you know this book dives into tough topics. One of my favorite aspects of the book is the relationship between the main character and her boyfriend. He is a totally decent guy and one of the most stable relationships in the book. He doesn't ever try to take advantage of their relationship, guilt her into feeling certain ways, or pressure her. This is really refreshing. Young women need to know that there are young men like this out t ...more
Feb 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
My full review can be found on the Epilie Aspie Chick blog!

Thank you to Bloomsbury YA for providing the ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Johanna is someone you can easily relate to, even in this dark revelation. She struggles to accept it and quickly blames herself. The curiosity is one that causes her to get to know her dad (and see a new side of her grandparents). She runs the gamut of feelings during these events and brings you with her. 
Jacob Rundle
Apr 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
I was honored to get an early copy of Accidental by Alex Richards. Overall, I'm giving it a solid 4/5 stars. The story was well written and entertaining. My attention was held for most of the story. There were some parts that I got lost, but I still highly enjoyed the novel. ...more
Chidimma Desiree
Jul 20, 2020 rated it it was ok
2/5 Stars (maybe 2.5 stars)

“Accidental” by Alex Richards is a young adult contemporary that tells the story of Johanna who’s dealing with the death of her mother, her father abandoning her, and living with her grandparents. Johanna believes that the death of her mother was due to a car accident, but that all changes when her father comes back in her life with the truth. Johanna life changes forever as she realizes that all her life she’s been living a lie. Her mother was not killed in a car acci
Wendy MacKnight
Aug 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2020
I read this book in one sitting and LOVED it. Johanna’s story will suck you in and keep you turning the pages until the very end! Alex Richards is a spectacular writer and major talent!
May 02, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Crisp writing and full-characters, Accidental explore an unexplored area of gun violence--a teenager learning she found a gun and is responsible for her mother's death--certainly about the issue of gun violence but also coming to terms with a history you can't control, learning to understand the choices that adults in your life have made for you, and figuring out how to live with the cracks we all have. A stunning debut. ...more
Shannon Takaoka
Apr 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
ACCIDENTAL is a page turning and incredibly moving debut, with a strong, authentic voice. The story focuses on 16-year-old Johanna, whose reconnection with the father she hasn’t seen since she was a toddler results in her learning the truth about her mother’s tragic accidental death – a truth that her grandparents, who have raised her, have kept from her for more than 13 years. The news sends Johanna spinning, as she struggles to come to terms with what happened to her mom, and to her, and the r ...more
Sep 20, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: ya-fiction
After going through the GR reviews, I’m probably going to be in the minority on this one.

This was well written in traditional terms, but the Johanna really blew it for me. Before she even knew anything about her past, she did not seem like a nice kid.

I didn’t like Jo’s voice, from page 1. It gave me icky vibes how she makes fun of her grandparents behind their back.

I do really like how open she is with everyone from the beginning. The added tension of keeping it secret would have made the book
Jul 20, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I was intrigued by this book the moment I read the jacket cover blurb. I bought it on the spot & read it over the weekend. I couldn't put it down.
"Accidental" is built around a subject that has haunted me ever since I read this statistic: "1.7 million children live with unlocked, loaded guns - 1 out of 3 homes with kids have guns." You see stories on the news more & more frequently these days about children (easily) getting access to guns & accidentally (or on purpose) wounding or killing siblin
Steven Salvatore
Jul 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
When I first read the description of this book, I knew it was going to be a gut-punch, and it really was -- but in all the best ways. Johanna, the main character, is so layered and the emotional roller coaster the author took me on through Jo's reaction to finding out a horrible secret about her past involving her mother and gun violence (trying not to be spoiler-y) left me breathless and NEEDING to turn the page to find out what would happen next. Jo was so relatable, and the author crafted suc ...more
Jun 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: a3e, 2020arc, 2020e, a2, bloomsbury
Wow. What to say about this emotional story?

First of all, this story may be upsetting to anyone who's lost someone to gun violence, so please be aware of that. It's not gratuitous at all, but it is there, since Johanna is just as much a victim as anyone else.

The characterisation in this is fabulous. Everyone is distinct and everyone is complicated. I loved that no one was just one simple thing; no one is The Brain or The Bully. They all have layers.

Guns, gun ownership and gun violence are extrem
Oct 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
Accidental tells the story of high school student Johanna who is living a normal life being raised by her grandparents.
Jo lost her mom when she was 2, one day she finds out she accidentally shot her mother to death when she was a toddler.

We get to read about the guilt and shame Jo feels. It is a heartbreaking story.
And something that sadly happens in real life too not just books and movies.

This is an emotional book. The author did a great job with this story. I felt everything the characters
Jan 20, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2021, english, kindle
I've been reading YA Books by USA's writers for almost 14 years and, even though a lot of those stories are so far-fetched from my reality, I've always liked reading about other people, other cultures.

But there is one thing that I can't understand: gun violence (even after reading stories and watching a lot movies about it).
For me is something so inconceivable to think about kids using guns at school. Or they selling guns at Walmart? Because in my country we have issues with guns, but guns being
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Alex Richards has been writing young adult fiction since the age of ten, with stacks of spiral notebooks to prove it. Also a freelance magazine contributor, Alex enjoys making no-budget horror movies, taking photographs, and crafting. Raised in Santa Fe, New Mexico, Alex lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two very silly kids.

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