Carswell’s novel, Look at the Sun
Don Carswell has hiked the Himalayas, been caught up in a Honduran coup, walked across England, canoed in the Amazon and pitched his tent everywhere from Iceland to Tierra del Fuego. But his greatest challenge may have been one that we all face: tackling the midlife crisis.
“You do all the usual things: get an education, get a job, get married, have kids… and somewhere around age forty you realize that you’ve checked all the boxes and you’re standing there looking at the second half of life without a map,” explains Carswell. “The only advice you get is to save for retirement. If you’re not careful, you end up sitting in front of a television as your life slips away.”
That’s where Carswell’s novel, Look at the Sun might help. “Look at the Sun may well be the world’s first coming-of-middle-age novel,” says Carswell. Look at the Sun follows the journey of Doug Roth, a middle-class family man and frustrated IT Director. Profoundly bored and facing a monstrous midlife crisis, Doug concludes that the best solution is to undertake a bumpy bus trip alone, along the twisted spine of Central America. A chance encounter with an old hippie leads him down a road of friendship, betrayal and paranoia and finally to the precipice of his mortality.
“Doug is a typical American living a typical life. At some point, he starts to question his life, as we all do, and wonder whether there might be something missing,” says Carswell.
On the surface, Look at the Sun chronicles Doug’s parallel journeys— his passage through a difficult chapter of life and his breathtaking trek through Central America, a dreamy but dangerous world of beauty and color. On a deeper level it is a thought-provoking exploration of what it truly means to think for oneself. In spite of the weighty subject matter, Look at the Sun maintains an upbeat, positive spin.
“Though the story is fictional, many of the events in this book are based on real experiences I had during many years of travel around the world,” says Carswell. “My hope is that this book will help some people find themselves, and entertain readers of all ages. What I really want to do is make people think in a way that they never have before.”
Look at the Sun can be ordered wherever books are sold.