If you follow my #littleloves posts you will know that I was asked to take part in a new book tour. This means I have been slowing working my way through Accidental Damage by Alice May. The pace has been less to do with the book and more to do with the sunshine. And of course having two children under three years of age in my house!
‘Accidental Damage’ is the tale of a family of six (mum, dad and four kids) who suddenly find themselves homeless after their old cottage falls down completely out of the blue one day. With nowhere to go they are forced to move into a tent in the garden. The tent is supposed to be a temporary solution but then they find out that their house insurance policy doesn’t cover them and the tent becomes a more permanent fixture.
Told retrospectively from the mother’s point of view, ‘Accidental Damage’ is packed with both humorous anecdotes and brutally honest emotional reactions to what it is like to live in your garden whilst working out how you are going to rebuild your home.
It is a tale of family love and loyalty, proving that if you pull together as a team and look after each other you can survive anything.
Told from a first person persecptive that jumps between the past and the present, Accidental Damage is written in a tone and at a pace that took a little getting used to. At first I found it a little annoying but then as I got to know our protagnist, I found it to be a perfect match for her. An artist rediscovering her passion after shutting herself off from it after a big bad that had happened in her past a few years earlier.
Everyone is allocated a name based on their role in the story which was amusing. The book follows the drama of a familys life as it falls apart after the family home literally falls down around them. At first their dispassion and plodding reaction to the disaster is annoying – you’re frustrated for their lack of action and accepting nature but then things start to happen and them and ‘the horde’ start to fight back against their situation.
However, I ended up finishing the book with a lot more empathy with how they reacted compared to when I started. The fact is that none of us know how we will react when faced with a situation such as this and a summer spent in the garden with a gaggle of kids – the most extreme of circumstances to say the least! I found Accidental Damage lighthearted, thought provoking and a great way to pass a sunny day in the garden.
4/5 – a nice, solid read.
This is a good score as all in all this was a really good book. Easy to read, it really gets you thinking about your own situation and I won’t lie, I checked our house insurance policy!! Nice to plod thought, it will be a lovely read to slowly work your way through over the summer.