Francoise was "improbably lovely," the type of character you see in movies. Of course, her life was a life, not a movie. But as the narrator, Barry (a writer who may or may not be the author), stunned by the news of her death, tells "her" story, he cannot find the reality of his friend in the dark, romantic film that flickers in his mind. As he searches for Francoise in a nightmare cityscape of desperate sex and casual violence, he finds only reflections of his own loss.
In haunting, cinematic prose, Before examines the impermanence of human connection and probes the arcane links between seemingly unrelated experiences.
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