Maxwell Sim could be any of us. He could be you.
He's about to have a mid-life crisis (though he doesn't know it yet). He'll be found in his car in the north of Scotland, half-naked and alone, suffering hypothermia, with a couple of empty whiskey bottles and a boot full of toothbrushes.
It's a far cry from a restaurant in Sydney, where his story starts.
But then Maxwell Sim has, unknowingly, got a long way to go. If he knew now about the toothbrushes, or the dead man on the aeroplane, or his father and the folded photograph, or Poppy the Adultery Facilitator, or even about Emma's lovely, fading voice, then perhaps he'd stay where he was – hiding from his destiny.
But Max knows none of it. And nor do you – at least not yet . . .