This Flawless Place Between: A Novel by Bruno Portier
Hurtling over the edge of the precipice, Anne embraces the moment, relishing the cool air streaming through her hair, the setting sun’s shimmering light, the freedom of release from the earth before gravity comes back to claim her. She takes the time to enjoy it. It will be over soon.
For all those who loved The Alchemist, Siddhartha, and Jonathan Livingston Seagull, This Flawless Place Between is a mesmerising and uplifting story about death and dying. Interweaving the key themes of The Tibetan Book of the Dead, one of the world’s most influential and treasured spiritual texts, Portier gently explores our deepest questions about life, love, and death with a refreshing openness and delicacy.
Anne and Evan are vacationing in the Tibetan mountains when on an isolated stretch of road they lose control of their motorbike. Bike and riders spin over the edge, plunging into a ravine. Evan’s leg is broken; Anne isn’t moving. A Tibetan peasant hurries to help them, but while Evan tries in vain to save Anne’s life, the stranger focuses on guiding her spirit along the new path it must take to the next one. So begins a cathartic voyage that carries Anne away from her broken body and back through the traumas and ecstasies of her life. Once again, she is a child mourning a dead pet, a young woman embracing her lover, the radiant hostess of an art exhibition, a distraught mother hearing that her young daughter has been critically injured. As she revisits her past, and the futures of those she will leave behind, Anne begins to accept not only her death but also her life and that what happens next will be up to her.