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Winner of the 2005 Whitbread Novel Award, shortlisted for the 2005 Man Booker Prize and the 2006 Orange Prize, "The Accidental" by Scottish author Ali Smith is a novel about what happens to one family when a stranger arrives in their midst. Arresting and wonderful, "The Accidental" pans in on the Norfolk holiday home of the Smart family one hot summer. There a beguiling stranger called Amber appears at the door bearing all sorts of unexpected gifts, trampling over family boundaries and sending each of the Smarts scurrying from the dark into the light. A novel about the ways that seemingly chance encounters irrevocably transform our understanding of ourselves, "The Accidental" explores the nature of truth, the role of fate and the power of storytelling. "A beguiling page-turner...a brilliant creation. To read "The Accidental" is to be excited from first to last". ("Independent"). "Joyous, a shot across the bows...writing as rapture, as giddy delight". ("The Times"). "Brilliant and engaging, frequently hilarious...Smith makes one look at the world afresh". ("Sunday Telegraph"). The award-winning Ali Smith is one of the most talented modern British writers; her novels, "Hotel World" and "There but for the", and her collections of short stories, "Other Stories and Other Stories", "The First Person and Other Stories" and "The Whole Story and Other Stories", are available in Penguin paperback.