Around the Sun PDF Ø Around the Kindle -

Around the Sun PDF Ø Around the Kindle -


Around the Sun ➷ [Reading] ➹ Around the Sun By Eric Michael Bovim ➬ – Capitalsoftworks.co.uk Mark White appears to have it all as the head of a prestigious PR firm in Washington, DC But in the aftermath of his wife’s sudden death, he is struggling to raise his eightyearold son, Colin When h Mark White appears to have it all as the head of a prestigious PR firm in Washington, DC But in the aftermath of his wife’s sudden death, he is struggling to raise his eightyearold son, Colin When he takes on a controversial new technology startup Around the Kindle - midscandal and weeks before their IPO, Mark’s world rapidly begins to unravel Adrift, Mark is soon forced to make lifealtering choices that will affect his bond with Colin, the legacy of his deceased wife’s unsold paintings, and, most importantly, his relationship with himself Set at intervals in presentday New York, San Francisco, Barbados, Italy, and Barcelona, Around the Sun is told in lush, graceful prose, a portrait of grief and hope in the age of social media, globalization, and artistic decadence.

  • Paperback
  • 288 pages
  • Around the Sun
  • Eric Michael Bovim
  • English
  • 12 March 2017

About the Author: Eric Michael Bovim

Eric Michael Bovim is an American writer He began his career as a journalist in for Dow Jones Newswires and Reuters, based in Madrid While in Spain, he covered the Basque separatist group, ETA, as well as the companies that rose and fell during Around the Kindle - the dot com collapse Around the Sun is his debut novel He is a graduate of College of the Holy Cross, where he studied twentieth century fiction a.



10 thoughts on “Around the Sun

  1. Andrew Smith Andrew Smith says:

    Mark White has built a successful company based in his PR expertise. Living close to Washington D.C., he charges a fortune for his services but it’s clear from the early sections that his enthusiasm for the business is waning. He’s tired of the long days, the constant need for international travel but most of all he’s worried about his young son, Colin. Since the loss of his wife, Monica, to a hit-and-run accident he’s been immersing himself in work but his son is struggling and soon Mark realises that Colin’s declining grades represent the visible signs of the strain he is under. How’s he going to get his life, and that of his son, back on an even keel?

    There’s quite a bit here about the life of a successful business executive and the perks (and some of the drawbacks) that such a position offers. The heart of this novel is, however, the story of Mark’s continuing battle to deal with the loss of his wife and to fully come to terms with his responsibilities as the sole remaining parent. Of course his money helps, so Colin always has somebody around – the hired help – but it’s now obvious that his struggle to cope with the death of his mother and now the absence of his father has become an acute problem.

    For the most part this is a fairly dense literary piece with occasional long rambling passages that could have been penned by Don DeLillo. And because of this I had the creeping feeling that this is a book I’d rather listen to than read, so that some of the more lumbering sections could wash over me. But as I became ever more drawn into the lives of these two floundering people I began to appreciate the quality and truth of some of the writing: I’d stop and re-read a section here and there and highlight a line that particularly resonated. Yes, there was definitely some good stuff here.

    It became ever clearer that Mark was in the early stages of a complete breakdown and that this was putting his entire company at risk. He’d developed a self destructive streak that he seemed unable to reverse. Some of his colleagues had determined that it might be better to jump ship now rather than risk down down with it and this death spiral seemed irreversible as one misstep followed another. By now I’d developed huge empathy for Mark and Colin and in the closing sections of the book I was willing them both on, hoping that they’d find some way of squaring the circle.

    This book is not perfect, by any means. Apart from the semi-impenetrable sections I’ve already referenced there are some interactions between Mark and Colin that just didn’t quite ring true for me. But, and it’s a big but, I did eventually find myself totally captivated by this story. The good heavily outweighs the not so good here. And there’s enough of the former for me to offer up a four-star rating.

    My thanks to Epigraph and NetGalley for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  2. Tonya Tonya says:

    Around The Sun is a debut novel by Eric Michael Bovim. The main character lives larger than life, jetting off to expensive locations, making deals and enjoying luxury all while grieving the loss of his wife who has passed away. His son, Colin is having a hard time with just seeing his dad two days a week. Interwoven within the lives of Michael and his son are the complex business dealings that drag him deeper and deeper into a web.

    The writing is detailed and descriptive, which is very enjoyable. Around the Sun is divided into three sections and the story gets more intense as the sections develop. Mark goes off the deep end, but it is not really until reading the second section that I was able to really put together part of the reasons why. The third section is more coming of age- in terms of his grief, and priorities...as well as his business choices..

    Well written, often deep Around the Sun stays with you for its lasting impact with regards to the power of our choices in everyday living.

    Thank you to NetGalley, Author Eric Michael Bovim, and Epigraph publishing for this temporary advance review copy for me to read and enjoy. As always, my opinions are my own.

  3. Marc Marc says:

    This is the compelling and moving story of Mark White, a man trying to run a multi-million dollar PR company, take care of his son, hold himself together, and deal with the grief of his wife’s sudden death’s a few years earlier. Set in 2016 prior to the U.S. Presidential election, it is told in three parts. The first part is told in a frenetic, almost stream-of-consciousness way and there is a feeling of dread that something bad is bound to happen. I have to admit I wasn’t quite sure of what I thought of Mark White at first. But as the story progresses and more is learned about Mark and his past, I found myself rooting for him and his quest to become whole. And, for me, it is his relationship to his son that is the most critically important part of the story. There is a lot going on in this book regarding his business with multiple characters and at times I found myself a bit lost and having to backtrack a bit so I’m giving this four stars. Overall, I found this to be an honest and emotional portrait of a man fighting to have the life that he truly wants. Highly recommended.

    I received an advanced review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

  4. Charlotte Cantillon Charlotte Cantillon says:

    Around The World is the story of Mark, a businessman at the head of a large PR firm, struggling with the death of his wife and looking after his son while trying to manage his work life and schedule.

    I really liked Mark as a character but I found the first half of this book really hard to get into. I loved all the moment with Mark and his son, Colin, but I had no interest in all the business side which seemed to take over the book. I couldn’t keep track of all the other characters and I didn’t care about any of the business challenges.

    It’s a shame really because I really loved the very final section of the book and the depictions of Barcelona were so vivid (so much so I felt very sad my visit there, which was meant to be in April, was cancelled).

    I wasn’t surprised to find this was a debut by a writer who was an entrepreneur himself. He is clearly very knowledgable about the business world but unfortunately that business-focus didn’t really do it for me and I would have liked more of the story to focus on Mark and Colin.

    3 stars

  5. Kasa Cotugno Kasa Cotugno says:

    Despite being a debut novel, this is an old fashioned style examination of a man who doesn't realize he's in crisis. Mark White seems to have it all, and to all intents and purposes, he does. Materially at least. His lifestyle is lavish, his tastes, high end. I actually had fun with his product namedropping, his extravagant lifestyle as he jets first class, and an appreciation for his penchant for fine dining with the proper wines. The plot itself appeared intermittently, and his grief for his beloved wife and love for his amazingly prescient 8-year-old son seem to drive his motivations. There is some lovely writing (We decline in the wrong climate, improve in others.) Hope Bovim has more in him than this one novel.

  6. Susie Dodge Susie Dodge says:

    Around the Sun by debut author Eric Michael Bovim takes readers on a captivating globe-crossing journey of a man trying and failing to juggle his multimilliom-dollar business with his grief. At times funny and other times cynical, Mark White is a D.C. PR kingpin, raking in so much money from his clients he invests some of it in gold, but he is also falling apart, coping with his wife’s tragic death by popping pills, drinking too much and getting very careless with his wealthy clients. Mark feels guilty about his business travel when it comes to leaving his 8-year-old son Colin with a nanny. Colin is wise beyond his years, as so many kids are, and he sees through a lot about his father while he copes with his own grief.

    Mark travels constantly, to New York, San Francisco, Copenhagen, Barcelona and back to his home turf in Washington, D.C. and Virginia. Bovim is skilled at describing the atmosphere of each city and making you feel that you are in the coffee shops, the bakeries and outdoor cafes and on the winding streets. I loved tagging along on the trip to Barbados, where Mark takes his son to escape from his imploding life back in D.C. The music, food and labyrinthian streets of Barcelona made me want to go there. As Mark’s late wife Monica says, “We are never where we are.”

    Eventually Mark’s increasing apathy toward his business and his pill popping and drinking lead to a very public business disaster and a crossroads in his life. As a reader, you are rooting for him to make the right decision. Along the way, the author’s beautifully accurate descriptions of airline travel, the media, public relations, grief and human nature are wonderfully written. Some of the scenes, especially with his friend Hawthorne and some of his PR clients, are also funny. His excellent character descriptions reminded me of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s cast in Gatsby, but in today’s moneyed world of IPOs and Twitter.

    Literary fiction is my favorite and I used to live in D.C. and Virginia and worked as a reporter for many years, so I particularly enjoyed the scenes and observations about the media, which were spot on. Barcelona becomes a bit of a character in the book and it was clear the author had lived there to be able to capture it so well. The exploration of grief and the relationship between the father and son were moving. Mark’s sudden, unpredictable memories of his late wife, a painter, captured the beauty and pain of grief.

    I highlighted many of the passages in this novel as I read, something I don’t often do. The elegant writing was that good. This debut novel also packs an energetic plot into its 288 pages. It is scheduled to be published June 1 by Epigraph. Thanks to the publisher and BookSirens for the chance to read and review this effervescent book. The epigraph by T.S. Eliot was perfect. “These fragments I have shored upon my ruins.”

  7. Ali Hoffmann Ali Hoffmann says:

    As this story opens, the reader is tethered to the narrator, a shameless, jet-setting executive living a life of nearly Wolf of Wall Street-level excess. The staccato dialogue is quippy and knife-sharp, effortlessly evoking a man both over-stimulated and utterly unconcerned. The world seems to be rushing around him, and the man is portrayed as both volatile and self-destructive. Throughout part one, there is this feeling of impending doom lurking behind the words, like the plot is careening towards some unknown catastrophe.

    In part two, the frenetic crush of activity, chaos, and disaster is followed by a subtle unwinding. The reader is given some room to breathe; brief moments of lucidity and lyricism in which we are offered snippets of the past. The flashbacks are revealing without being overindulgent; they are woven into the flow of the narrative with little to no preamble. Blink and you might miss them.

    Finally, in part three, the empathy we have built with the narrator is rewarded. The reader stays tethered to the protagonist's thoughts as we soak in his character arc. We get to observe as the point of view of the jet-setter unravels to allow the role of the single, grieving dad to come forward. We are shown a sample of the narrator's appreciation for art, poetry, and music that has been as yet suppressed--this soul food cutting through his harder outer layers. His notes on travel become much more romantic, too, as we wind towards the conclusion. His descriptions of place become rich in cultural detail and personal nostalgia, erasing the bitter and harried accounts of before.

    In reflection, this story feels deeply personal to me--not in the sense that I resonate with the protagonist, but rather that his experiences were painted so vividly that I began to take on his feelings and apprehensions as my own. I think this debut from Eric Michael Bovim showed incredible strength. I can only hope to see more!

  8. Kathy Kathy says:

    New voice in fiction delivers a compelling tale of naked ambition, business crises, moving grief and the path to redemption.

    I received advanced copy through Net Galley.

  9. Beppie Beppie says:

    Bovim's debut novel Around the Sun packs quite a punch in its 288 pages! Told in three distinctive parts, the reader is introduced immersively to our protagonist Mark White, the powerful CEO of an elite Washington, DC Public Relations firm. His client list includes DC movers and shakers, heads of international Fortune 500 firms, and heads of state in foreign lands. He mans the helm of the DC based, yet internationally connected firm with style, confidence, and ego to spare.

    In Part One we join Mark as he jet sets (at the drop of a a dime) around the world, troubleshooting and providing damage control for his elite clientele, the picture of cool, calm and commanding, he quite literally has the world but the tail! Or so he would have everyone think. Told in rapid, scattershot, frenetic language and almost stream of consciousness prose, Mark would have everyone (himself included) believe there is no problem, no situation that he CAN. NOT. HANDLE. Bada bing, bada boom! Dash here, dash there! Fix it, fix it, FIX IT!

    Part One ends, however, with a devastating professional crash for Mark. His armor has chinks and his I Can Handle Anything mask has slipped. In Part Two, we find that the Prince of PR has a few unresolved and seriously troubling problems. While not a surprise, for these problems were cleverly hidden in plain sight within the novel's first section, we discover the true extent of Mark's attempts at self-deception and avoidance. For you see, Mark's beloved wife Monica was killed in a hit-and-run accident months before. Monica, a successful artist, has always provided Mark with context and grounding. With the sudden removal of the connecting color in the portrait of his life, Mark has tried, unsuccessfully, to bury his deeply devastating grief in booze, pills, and business. With his mantra of I'm fine, he has neglected to see that his young son, Colin, is far from fine. Slowly realizing that he is all Colin has in the world, a devastated Mark in the third and final part of this excellent story is led on yet another round of soul searching turns around the sun hopefully coming to terms with his struggle between ambition and life without, like Icarus, flying too close to the scorching rays of the sun.

    Eric Michael Bovim's writing is not for those who want an easy read in either topic or prose. I will not lie, I consider myself a word nerd and his vernacular of choice had me reaching often for my dictionary! So too did I Google with frequency the world that Bovim's characters inhabited. As my career path did not lead me through the halls of high power, high energy public relations agencies or make me privy to the ins and outs of the corporate financial world, I definitely sought edification a time or two or three! But what I did recognize early on, and quite clearly, was the very real and oh so human pain of grief and loss that he so successfully wove throughout the pages his book. Mission accomplished Mr. Bovim! I look forward to sharing many more of your turns around the sun as written in your distinctive voice!
    .

    I'd like to express my thanks to NetGalley and to the author, Eric Michael Bovim, for the opportunity to receive an advanced digital copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.

    #NetGalley
    #Eric Michael Bovim

  10. Linda Sardone Linda Sardone says:

    “We can know more of something through its absence, for the omissions written into stories or painted into settings all command our imagination.” Mark White, from Part 1 of this novel.

    My review focuses on the main character, Mark White, and his 8 yr old son, Colin, without whom there would be no story to tell. Mark is a difficult character for the reader to know, since he no longer knows himself. And since Mark is our first person narrator and trying to fool himself that the busyness of his days has depth, it is detailed paragraphs of busyness we get too much of in both his travel and everyday life: I unpacked; I brushed my teeth; I ordered an espresso; I opened my laptop, etc.

    Stripped of this filler, a story of interest does emerge, in Mark’s PR business at the height of its influence through sudden implosion to disgrace, and in his awakening that Colin will no longer suffer in medicated emotional limbo his grief for his mother or the loss of his father to absence and then distraction while at home. Four years have passed since Monica’s accidental death, and although the quote above is uttered by Mark as wisdom learned in his ascension to PR genius, the omission of what has transpired between Monica’s death and the present is a mystery left to the reader’s imagination to unravel. We get no clues as to the arc of Mark’s grief before the present time. I know from personal experience that grieving for a spouse is not a linear process, so I accept that Mark used immersion in work to avoid processing his grief and that his present state of mind is plausible.

    What is difficult to accept is that Mark did not choose to scale back on his business commitments earlier in the aftermath of his wife’s death to provide the attention and support Colin needed towards a healthy adjustment to life without his mom. Part 3 of this book gives us Monica remembered through photos, her art and memories of places traveled, a firm foundation upon which Mark and Colin embark to make each other whole again. The ending is not happy, but hopeful.

    Recommended, with reservations about substantial filler as described above and for a confusing whiplash of time line in the early business-focused chapters. Also for the overuse in part 1 of obscure words that I was compelled to stop and look up since each seemed to be key to understanding the point being made, thereby interrupting reading flow.
    As an editing comment, I would have appreciated that the rapid fire single line business dialogues included an occasional ID of the speaker. More than once I lost track of which person was speaking and had to re-read the passage.

    My thanks to Epigraph Publishing and NetGalley for ARC access in return for an honest review.
    #netgalley
    #aroundthesun

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10 thoughts on “Around the Sun

  1. Andrew Smith Andrew Smith says:

    Mark White has built a successful company based in his PR expertise. Living close to Washington D.C., he charges a fortune for his services but it’s clear from the early sections that his enthusiasm for the business is waning. He’s tired of the long days, the constant need for international travel but most of all he’s worried about his young son, Colin. Since the loss of his wife, Monica, to a hit-and-run accident he’s been immersing himself in work but his son is struggling and soon Mark realises that Colin’s declining grades represent the visible signs of the strain he is under. How’s he going to get his life, and that of his son, back on an even keel?

    There’s quite a bit here about the life of a successful business executive and the perks (and some of the drawbacks) that such a position offers. The heart of this novel is, however, the story of Mark’s continuing battle to deal with the loss of his wife and to fully come to terms with his responsibilities as the sole remaining parent. Of course his money helps, so Colin always has somebody around – the hired help – but it’s now obvious that his struggle to cope with the death of his mother and now the absence of his father has become an acute problem.

    For the most part this is a fairly dense literary piece with occasional long rambling passages that could have been penned by Don DeLillo. And because of this I had the creeping feeling that this is a book I’d rather listen to than read, so that some of the more lumbering sections could wash over me. But as I became ever more drawn into the lives of these two floundering people I began to appreciate the quality and truth of some of the writing: I’d stop and re-read a section here and there and highlight a line that particularly resonated. Yes, there was definitely some good stuff here.

    It became ever clearer that Mark was in the early stages of a complete breakdown and that this was putting his entire company at risk. He’d developed a self destructive streak that he seemed unable to reverse. Some of his colleagues had determined that it might be better to jump ship now rather than risk down down with it and this death spiral seemed irreversible as one misstep followed another. By now I’d developed huge empathy for Mark and Colin and in the closing sections of the book I was willing them both on, hoping that they’d find some way of squaring the circle.

    This book is not perfect, by any means. Apart from the semi-impenetrable sections I’ve already referenced there are some interactions between Mark and Colin that just didn’t quite ring true for me. But, and it’s a big but, I did eventually find myself totally captivated by this story. The good heavily outweighs the not so good here. And there’s enough of the former for me to offer up a four-star rating.

    My thanks to Epigraph and NetGalley for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  2. Tonya Tonya says:

    Around The Sun is a debut novel by Eric Michael Bovim. The main character lives larger than life, jetting off to expensive locations, making deals and enjoying luxury all while grieving the loss of his wife who has passed away. His son, Colin is having a hard time with just seeing his dad two days a week. Interwoven within the lives of Michael and his son are the complex business dealings that drag him deeper and deeper into a web.

    The writing is detailed and descriptive, which is very enjoyable. Around the Sun is divided into three sections and the story gets more intense as the sections develop. Mark goes off the deep end, but it is not really until reading the second section that I was able to really put together part of the reasons why. The third section is more coming of age- in terms of his grief, and priorities...as well as his business choices..

    Well written, often deep Around the Sun stays with you for its lasting impact with regards to the power of our choices in everyday living.

    Thank you to NetGalley, Author Eric Michael Bovim, and Epigraph publishing for this temporary advance review copy for me to read and enjoy. As always, my opinions are my own.

  3. Marc Marc says:

    This is the compelling and moving story of Mark White, a man trying to run a multi-million dollar PR company, take care of his son, hold himself together, and deal with the grief of his wife’s sudden death’s a few years earlier. Set in 2016 prior to the U.S. Presidential election, it is told in three parts. The first part is told in a frenetic, almost stream-of-consciousness way and there is a feeling of dread that something bad is bound to happen. I have to admit I wasn’t quite sure of what I thought of Mark White at first. But as the story progresses and more is learned about Mark and his past, I found myself rooting for him and his quest to become whole. And, for me, it is his relationship to his son that is the most critically important part of the story. There is a lot going on in this book regarding his business with multiple characters and at times I found myself a bit lost and having to backtrack a bit so I’m giving this four stars. Overall, I found this to be an honest and emotional portrait of a man fighting to have the life that he truly wants. Highly recommended.

    I received an advanced review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

  4. Charlotte Cantillon Charlotte Cantillon says:

    Around The World is the story of Mark, a businessman at the head of a large PR firm, struggling with the death of his wife and looking after his son while trying to manage his work life and schedule.

    I really liked Mark as a character but I found the first half of this book really hard to get into. I loved all the moment with Mark and his son, Colin, but I had no interest in all the business side which seemed to take over the book. I couldn’t keep track of all the other characters and I didn’t care about any of the business challenges.

    It’s a shame really because I really loved the very final section of the book and the depictions of Barcelona were so vivid (so much so I felt very sad my visit there, which was meant to be in April, was cancelled).

    I wasn’t surprised to find this was a debut by a writer who was an entrepreneur himself. He is clearly very knowledgable about the business world but unfortunately that business-focus didn’t really do it for me and I would have liked more of the story to focus on Mark and Colin.

    3 stars

  5. Kasa Cotugno Kasa Cotugno says:

    Despite being a debut novel, this is an old fashioned style examination of a man who doesn't realize he's in crisis. Mark White seems to have it all, and to all intents and purposes, he does. Materially at least. His lifestyle is lavish, his tastes, high end. I actually had fun with his product namedropping, his extravagant lifestyle as he jets first class, and an appreciation for his penchant for fine dining with the proper wines. The plot itself appeared intermittently, and his grief for his beloved wife and love for his amazingly prescient 8-year-old son seem to drive his motivations. There is some lovely writing (We decline in the wrong climate, improve in others.) Hope Bovim has more in him than this one novel.

  6. Susie Dodge Susie Dodge says:

    Around the Sun by debut author Eric Michael Bovim takes readers on a captivating globe-crossing journey of a man trying and failing to juggle his multimilliom-dollar business with his grief. At times funny and other times cynical, Mark White is a D.C. PR kingpin, raking in so much money from his clients he invests some of it in gold, but he is also falling apart, coping with his wife’s tragic death by popping pills, drinking too much and getting very careless with his wealthy clients. Mark feels guilty about his business travel when it comes to leaving his 8-year-old son Colin with a nanny. Colin is wise beyond his years, as so many kids are, and he sees through a lot about his father while he copes with his own grief.

    Mark travels constantly, to New York, San Francisco, Copenhagen, Barcelona and back to his home turf in Washington, D.C. and Virginia. Bovim is skilled at describing the atmosphere of each city and making you feel that you are in the coffee shops, the bakeries and outdoor cafes and on the winding streets. I loved tagging along on the trip to Barbados, where Mark takes his son to escape from his imploding life back in D.C. The music, food and labyrinthian streets of Barcelona made me want to go there. As Mark’s late wife Monica says, “We are never where we are.”

    Eventually Mark’s increasing apathy toward his business and his pill popping and drinking lead to a very public business disaster and a crossroads in his life. As a reader, you are rooting for him to make the right decision. Along the way, the author’s beautifully accurate descriptions of airline travel, the media, public relations, grief and human nature are wonderfully written. Some of the scenes, especially with his friend Hawthorne and some of his PR clients, are also funny. His excellent character descriptions reminded me of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s cast in Gatsby, but in today’s moneyed world of IPOs and Twitter.

    Literary fiction is my favorite and I used to live in D.C. and Virginia and worked as a reporter for many years, so I particularly enjoyed the scenes and observations about the media, which were spot on. Barcelona becomes a bit of a character in the book and it was clear the author had lived there to be able to capture it so well. The exploration of grief and the relationship between the father and son were moving. Mark’s sudden, unpredictable memories of his late wife, a painter, captured the beauty and pain of grief.

    I highlighted many of the passages in this novel as I read, something I don’t often do. The elegant writing was that good. This debut novel also packs an energetic plot into its 288 pages. It is scheduled to be published June 1 by Epigraph. Thanks to the publisher and BookSirens for the chance to read and review this effervescent book. The epigraph by T.S. Eliot was perfect. “These fragments I have shored upon my ruins.”

  7. Ali Hoffmann Ali Hoffmann says:

    As this story opens, the reader is tethered to the narrator, a shameless, jet-setting executive living a life of nearly Wolf of Wall Street-level excess. The staccato dialogue is quippy and knife-sharp, effortlessly evoking a man both over-stimulated and utterly unconcerned. The world seems to be rushing around him, and the man is portrayed as both volatile and self-destructive. Throughout part one, there is this feeling of impending doom lurking behind the words, like the plot is careening towards some unknown catastrophe.

    In part two, the frenetic crush of activity, chaos, and disaster is followed by a subtle unwinding. The reader is given some room to breathe; brief moments of lucidity and lyricism in which we are offered snippets of the past. The flashbacks are revealing without being overindulgent; they are woven into the flow of the narrative with little to no preamble. Blink and you might miss them.

    Finally, in part three, the empathy we have built with the narrator is rewarded. The reader stays tethered to the protagonist's thoughts as we soak in his character arc. We get to observe as the point of view of the jet-setter unravels to allow the role of the single, grieving dad to come forward. We are shown a sample of the narrator's appreciation for art, poetry, and music that has been as yet suppressed--this soul food cutting through his harder outer layers. His notes on travel become much more romantic, too, as we wind towards the conclusion. His descriptions of place become rich in cultural detail and personal nostalgia, erasing the bitter and harried accounts of before.

    In reflection, this story feels deeply personal to me--not in the sense that I resonate with the protagonist, but rather that his experiences were painted so vividly that I began to take on his feelings and apprehensions as my own. I think this debut from Eric Michael Bovim showed incredible strength. I can only hope to see more!

  8. Kathy Kathy says:

    New voice in fiction delivers a compelling tale of naked ambition, business crises, moving grief and the path to redemption.

    I received advanced copy through Net Galley.

  9. Beppie Beppie says:

    Bovim's debut novel Around the Sun packs quite a punch in its 288 pages! Told in three distinctive parts, the reader is introduced immersively to our protagonist Mark White, the powerful CEO of an elite Washington, DC Public Relations firm. His client list includes DC movers and shakers, heads of international Fortune 500 firms, and heads of state in foreign lands. He mans the helm of the DC based, yet internationally connected firm with style, confidence, and ego to spare.

    In Part One we join Mark as he jet sets (at the drop of a a dime) around the world, troubleshooting and providing damage control for his elite clientele, the picture of cool, calm and commanding, he quite literally has the world but the tail! Or so he would have everyone think. Told in rapid, scattershot, frenetic language and almost stream of consciousness prose, Mark would have everyone (himself included) believe there is no problem, no situation that he CAN. NOT. HANDLE. Bada bing, bada boom! Dash here, dash there! Fix it, fix it, FIX IT!

    Part One ends, however, with a devastating professional crash for Mark. His armor has chinks and his I Can Handle Anything mask has slipped. In Part Two, we find that the Prince of PR has a few unresolved and seriously troubling problems. While not a surprise, for these problems were cleverly hidden in plain sight within the novel's first section, we discover the true extent of Mark's attempts at self-deception and avoidance. For you see, Mark's beloved wife Monica was killed in a hit-and-run accident months before. Monica, a successful artist, has always provided Mark with context and grounding. With the sudden removal of the connecting color in the portrait of his life, Mark has tried, unsuccessfully, to bury his deeply devastating grief in booze, pills, and business. With his mantra of I'm fine, he has neglected to see that his young son, Colin, is far from fine. Slowly realizing that he is all Colin has in the world, a devastated Mark in the third and final part of this excellent story is led on yet another round of soul searching turns around the sun hopefully coming to terms with his struggle between ambition and life without, like Icarus, flying too close to the scorching rays of the sun.

    Eric Michael Bovim's writing is not for those who want an easy read in either topic or prose. I will not lie, I consider myself a word nerd and his vernacular of choice had me reaching often for my dictionary! So too did I Google with frequency the world that Bovim's characters inhabited. As my career path did not lead me through the halls of high power, high energy public relations agencies or make me privy to the ins and outs of the corporate financial world, I definitely sought edification a time or two or three! But what I did recognize early on, and quite clearly, was the very real and oh so human pain of grief and loss that he so successfully wove throughout the pages his book. Mission accomplished Mr. Bovim! I look forward to sharing many more of your turns around the sun as written in your distinctive voice!
    .

    I'd like to express my thanks to NetGalley and to the author, Eric Michael Bovim, for the opportunity to receive an advanced digital copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.

    #NetGalley
    #Eric Michael Bovim

  10. Linda Sardone Linda Sardone says:

    “We can know more of something through its absence, for the omissions written into stories or painted into settings all command our imagination.” Mark White, from Part 1 of this novel.

    My review focuses on the main character, Mark White, and his 8 yr old son, Colin, without whom there would be no story to tell. Mark is a difficult character for the reader to know, since he no longer knows himself. And since Mark is our first person narrator and trying to fool himself that the busyness of his days has depth, it is detailed paragraphs of busyness we get too much of in both his travel and everyday life: I unpacked; I brushed my teeth; I ordered an espresso; I opened my laptop, etc.

    Stripped of this filler, a story of interest does emerge, in Mark’s PR business at the height of its influence through sudden implosion to disgrace, and in his awakening that Colin will no longer suffer in medicated emotional limbo his grief for his mother or the loss of his father to absence and then distraction while at home. Four years have passed since Monica’s accidental death, and although the quote above is uttered by Mark as wisdom learned in his ascension to PR genius, the omission of what has transpired between Monica’s death and the present is a mystery left to the reader’s imagination to unravel. We get no clues as to the arc of Mark’s grief before the present time. I know from personal experience that grieving for a spouse is not a linear process, so I accept that Mark used immersion in work to avoid processing his grief and that his present state of mind is plausible.

    What is difficult to accept is that Mark did not choose to scale back on his business commitments earlier in the aftermath of his wife’s death to provide the attention and support Colin needed towards a healthy adjustment to life without his mom. Part 3 of this book gives us Monica remembered through photos, her art and memories of places traveled, a firm foundation upon which Mark and Colin embark to make each other whole again. The ending is not happy, but hopeful.

    Recommended, with reservations about substantial filler as described above and for a confusing whiplash of time line in the early business-focused chapters. Also for the overuse in part 1 of obscure words that I was compelled to stop and look up since each seemed to be key to understanding the point being made, thereby interrupting reading flow.
    As an editing comment, I would have appreciated that the rapid fire single line business dialogues included an occasional ID of the speaker. More than once I lost track of which person was speaking and had to re-read the passage.

    My thanks to Epigraph Publishing and NetGalley for ARC access in return for an honest review.
    #netgalley
    #aroundthesun

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