This Magazine

Progressive politics, ideas & culture

March-April 2018

REVIEW: Jordan Tannahill’s new book explores the limbo between life and death

Inside Liminal

Aaron Broverman

By Jordan Tannahill
House of Anansi Press, $22.95

Destabilizing from its opening pages, Liminal by Jordan Tannahill places readers firmly between life and death, fact and fiction, consciousness and unconsciousness. A quasi-fictional version of the author’s own life, the main character, Jordan, finds his mother in bed. Unsure if she is dead or asleep, he is flooded with memories and a constant interrogation of what it means to be caught in limbo between life and death. Liminal moves at a breakneck pace, combining science, philosophy, spirituality, and pop culture in a way that makes Jordan’s mother’s death feel secondary as he ponders the fragility of mortality. Readers may never think about living or dying the same way again.

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