Paul Auster\'s Music of Chance is a story about risks, money, and one man\'s lack of direction in his life. In the beginning of the story, the protagonist Jim Nashe, an ex-fireman from Boston, spends a good amount of time just driving around the country using the remaining amounts of his money his father had left him in his will. He couldn\'t stand staying for more than a couple of days at most in one spot. He was always on the move and as a result, he lost precious time that he could have spent with his daughter in Minnesota. It wasn\'t until one day while driving on a lone road; he spots a disheveled young man by the name Pozzi. The two form a partnership for an upcoming poker game. This all takes place in the first chapter of Auster\'s book, and it serves an important role by allowing the reader to enter Nashe\'s life. It becomes understood that he is not sure what he wants to do with himself and with his life. He drives all day and part of the night, but at the end of his travel!
ing, he truly has gone nowhere. The movie does not include these crucial events. Instead, Nashe only mentions that he drove a lot in his past, but he does not touch on important things like his daughter and his run in with Fiona. The deletion and addition of certain events in the movie, creates a whole new theme from that of the book version, making it a somewhat less emotional and suspenseful.

The first chapter in the book is such a crucial element to the story because it illustrates Nashe\'s search his own life. He just inherits two hundred thousand dollars, and he grows confused as to where his life is going, that he practically just wastes it all away. He did manage to think of Juliette and set up a bank account in her name, but other than that he spends it on food, hotels, and on gas for his new Saab. The audience learns about his love fling with Fiona and also witnesses him ruin it as he flees away, being too afraid of settling down. Auster writes:

The money was responsible for his freedom, but each time he used it to buy another portion of that freedom, he was denying himself an equal portion of it as well. The money kept him going, but it was also an engine of loss, inexorably leading him back to the place where he had begun. (17)

Jim Nashe\'s money was the only thing that was allowing him to do whatever he wants. No one could stop him from driving as it allows him to be his own boss. The only thing that could prevent him from \'driving\' his own life was when his money runs out, and it was sure to happen sooner or later.