A Perfect Day
Richard Paul Evans
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A Perfect Day
Richard Paul Evans
352 pages
October 2004
rated 4 1/2 of 5 possible stars

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Robert Harlan is a middle-aged father and doting husband working in a mid-level management position. He is well-liked, enjoys moderate success, and finds his job as a tolerable means of providing for his family. When rumors of promotions pervade his workplace, Robert is pleasantly surprised to be summoned to his bossís office. Once there, this aspiring writer learns that the purpose of the meeting is to review the terms of his termination.

This unexpected turn of events provides Robert with the means and opportunity to complete the novel he had always dreamed of completing. With the support and encouragement of his wife, he tackles the project, finishes the novel, sends it to a host of agents, and ponders a new future. The rejection letters pour in, but one literary agent takes a strong liking to his work and becomes confident of its success. Within a short period of time, his novel is polished and published, and Robert finds himself in the center of the unfamiliar and unrelenting publishing world.

A Perfect Day tracks the trials and tribulations of Robertís book tour and the impact it has upon his personal and professional life. He travels around the country meeting with press and publicity agents, hosting book signings and readings, and working diligently to ensure the continued success of his work. The two competing story lines contrast the escalation of his writing career with the downward spiral of his marriage and personal relationships. While Robert succeeds in achieving his lifelong dream of writing a best-selling novel, he comes to the realization that his dream may have always included something well beyond critical writing acclaim. In the end, the most significant lesson he learns is that sometimes accurately defining a dream may be just as challenging as reaching it.

While at times A Perfect Day reads as a critical examination of what a first-time author can expect on a book tour, an unusual twist guarantees that the reader will take away much more than this rare and intriguing glimpse into the publishing world. The Perfect Day is a sweet warm tale about this aspiring writerís road to self-discovery, and it offers universal life lessons that we should all be so lucky as to master.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at www.curledup.com. © Lori West, 2004

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