Iris Leal gives the pair of lovers in this novel a chance, despite the fact that their love is totally unanticipated. Accidental Happiness is not only a splendid love story it is also the story of a frustrated middle-aged writer who escapes from the city to the country, and from his loving, submissive and colorless wife to solitude.
Forty-five-year-old Daniel rents a house in a little village set in a pastoral northern landscape, where he seeks inspiration to write a novel -to no avail. The local physician, Elazar, bursts into his life. A widower whose wife died prematurely in mysterious circumstances, Elazar invites Daniel to dinner at his home, where a fateful encounter with his daughter changes Daniel-s life. Attractive Amalia, who is 20 years younger than Daniel, is awaiting a man capable of extricating her from her insalubrious situation.
Gradually the dark secret regarding Amalia`s relationship with her father is revealed: they have been involved in an incestuous liaison since Amalia`s childhood, and this was the cause of her mother`s slow decline and loss of the will to live.
The relationship between Daniel and Amalia is hampered neither by the revelation of the blot on Amalia`s life nor by the fact that Daniel is married. The descriptions of their love scenes are extremely sensuous.
Elazar fails in his struggle to hold on to his daughter-lover. Love triumphs, but it is a fragile and tentative victory. It is also the triumph of life over literature, which is a substitute for life. Daniel does not write the great novel he planned, but instead discovers that happiness is within reach.