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The Accidental
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About the Author

Ali Smith was born in Inverness in 1962. She is the author of Free Love and Other Stories, Like, Other Stories and Other Stories, Hotel World, The Whole Story and Other Stories, The Accidental, Girl Meets Boy, The First Person and Other Stories, There but for the, Artful, How to be both, and Public library and other stories. Hotel World was shortlisted for the Booker Prize and the Orange Prize and The Accidental was shortlisted for the Man Booker and the Orange Prize. How to be both won the Baileys Prize, the Goldsmiths Prize and the Costa Novel Award and was shortlisted for the Man Booker and the Folio Prize. Ali Smith lives in Cambridge and her next novel is forthcoming in 2016.

Reviews

Heather O'Neill plays Amber, a mysterious stranger who wangles her way into the lives of a vacationing English family spending the summer in a remote cottage. O'Neill reads with studious detachment and a persistent air of mischief, as if the entire story is a particularly juicy practical joke. Given Amber's predilection for wreaking havoc in her new adopted family's comfortably misguided lives, the emotion is supremely apropos. O'Neill is joined by a cast of performers, including Ruth Moore as the perpetually harried, perpetually preoccupied Eve, who spends all her time dreaming of the characters of the latest historical novel she's writing, and Stina Nielsen as Astrid, a 12-year-old with a frightening imagination and a propensity for recording the world on her video camera. The bulk of the book, though, is read by O'Neill, who provides a suitably nuanced reading, at times placid, at times flashing an air of free-floating menace. It is her work, above all, that brings Smith's novel to fully fleshed existence. Simultaneous release with the Pantheon hardcover (Reviews, Oct. 31). (Jan.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

"Astonishing. . . . Vivid and affecting. . . . Wonderfully supple, jazzy." -"The New York Times"
"Persistently sparkling pages...of startling and clarifying emotional power. . . . It casts a spell." --"The Atlantic Monthly"
"Completely captivating. . . . Thoroughly charming and melodic. . . .Devilishly lovely." --"The Boston Globe"
"Beautifully executed. . . . A few pages [in] and you begin to remember how much fun it is to put yourself in the hands of a skilled, majestically confident writer. . . . Delightful."
--"The New York Observer"
"Brims with wit, humor, and energy." --"The Christian Science Monitor"
" Astonishing. . . . Vivid and affecting. . . . Wonderfully supple, jazzy." - "The New York Times"
" Persistently sparkling pages...of startling and clarifying emotional power. . . . It casts a spell." -- "The Atlantic Monthly"
" Completely captivating. . . . Thoroughly charming and melodic. . . .Devilishly lovely." -- "The Boston Globe"
" Beautifully executed. . . . A few pages [in] and you begin to remember how much fun it is to put yourself in the hands of a skilled, majestically confident writer. . . . Delightful."
-- "The New York Observer"
" Brims with wit, humor, and energy." -- "The Christian Science Monitor"
from the United Kingdom:
"An outstanding novel . . . Exuberantly inventive . . . Beautifully formed and astringently intelligent . . . It is as good as anyone who has been watching the progress of this talented author could possibly have hoped."
-"The Sunday Times"
"Funny, sexy, poignant, surprising, playful . . . Although the novel dazzles with the richness of language and ideas, it retains a delicious lightness."
-"The Observer"
"Spectacular . . . Allusive, ambitious and formally acrobatic . . . Original, restless, formally and morally challenging, [Ali Smith] remains a writer who resists definition."
-"The Times Literary Supplement"
"Amazing . . . Dazzling . . . Smith is one of our greatest imaginative writers."
-"The Scotsman"
"Joyous . . . Smith plays dizzying games with her story and language; she bends and buckles her prose, breathes fire into it, lets it cool, swirls it up in unimaginable shapes. This is writing as pure rapture, as giddy delight."
-"The Times"

"From the Hardcover edition."

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