4 journalers for this copy...
A story about a family man (a successful lawyer with a happy family life) who has an "unnamed" condition- the inexplicable need to physically wander away from his life as he knows it. After each "episode" he walks further and further, without really understanding why.
I read this some time ago, and really enjoyed this novel.
Its premise, a man who suffers from an uncontrollable urge to walk, seemed intriguing - but I admit I'd expected a more otherworldly tone to the story for some reason. As it is, it's a mix of medical mystery, psychological torment, and some heartwarming notes regarding the ways family can try to stay connected even in the face of wildly distressing situations.
In-story, the main character's syndrome is something that doctors can't diagnose, leading to the general conclusion that it's a psychological issue; later in the story he agrees to go on medication. But it doesn't stop his need to walk, and in the end we have no idea what caused the syndrome - though that's part of the point, I think: sometimes things just happen...
The symptoms of his walkabouts are highly distressing, as the first incident we witness takes place during very cold weather, where his tendency to simply wander off can leave him subject to frostbite or worse. (He has some small amount of control over taking things with him when the walking kicks in, but even that can fail, such that he has to take survival gear with him at all times or risk waking up lost, chilled, and bloody. This reminded me a LOT of some of the scenes from Time Traveler's Wife, where Henry would sometimes find himself in extremely fraught situations after another time-jump - but he didn't have the option to take anything with him.)
By the end of the story, Tim's situation resembled that of all too many homeless people, mentally ill in some way or other, such that they can reach out for help now and then but turn away and move on after a while. I don't know if the author was trying to lead the reader into sympathy for that situation; it felt that way at times, but as main character Tim has a couple of things going for him that most homeless people do not - including a generous budget, which he seems to be able to draw on almost anywhere, thanks to some planning by his family - it doesn't always map.
So... an intriguing, often wrenching, sometimes touching story, but one that left me a bit baffled!
*** Released for the 2019 Keep Them Moving release challenge. ***
WILD RELEASE NOTES:
Left on a bench by the old historic church (I'll come back and edit in the name when I'm not on my phone...!).