From Evans (The Sunflower, 2005, etc.), the first installment of a new series starring a Seattle adman who loses everything and embarks on a soul-cleansing cross-country trek.
Alan Christoffersen has it all—his own thriving boutique ad agency in Seattle, a McMansion, luxury cars and a beautiful wife, McKale, who’s also his best friend from childhood. In mid-meeting—he’s just snagged a lucrative new account—Alan is notified that McKale has been injured in a fall from her horse. His partner Kyle promises to run things while Alan tends to McKale during her hospitalization and rehab. On his first day back at work he learns that Kyle stole his clients, and the agency is now teetering on the brink. When McKale dies from complications from a urinary tract infection, fate piles on. Alan’s finances are in turmoil. The bank forecloses on the house; the cars are repossessed. With about $20,000 left to his name, Alan decides to walk across the continental United States by the longest route—Seattle to Key West, Fla. Lessons are learned from people he encounters along the way: the waitress who’s a survivor of childhood sexual abuse, the bed and breakfast proprietress who shares her near death experience, the stranded motorist who will literally become his “angel” when he fixes her flat tire. Alan’s exodus should generate many sequels—this installment barely takes him through Washington State. The message is clear: Alan has been taken out of his comfort zone because the Almighty has loftier plans for him.
Jane and Michael Stern meet Paulo Coelho.