The Humans by Matt Haig

78%

5 Critic Reviews

...the wonder and humor with which the protagonist approaches life, and the many emotions and discoveries he experiences, are worth getting a bit weepy over.
-Publishers Weekly

Synopsis

The bestselling, award-winning author of The Radleys is back with his funniest, most devastating dark comedy yet, a “silly, sad, suspenseful, and soulful” (Philadelphia Inquirer) novel that’s “full of heart” (Entertainment Weekly).

When an extra-terrestrial visitor arrives on Earth, his first impressions of the human species are less than positive. Taking the form of Professor Andrew Martin, a prominent mathematician at Cambridge University, the visitor is eager to complete the gruesome task assigned him and hurry home to his own utopian planet, where everyone is omniscient and immortal.

He is disgusted by the way humans look, what they eat, their capacity for murder and war, and is equally baffled by the concepts of love and family. But as time goes on, he starts to realize there may be more to this strange species than he had thought. Disguised as Martin, he drinks wine, reads poetry, develops an ear for rock music, and a taste for peanut butter. Slowly, unexpectedly, he forges bonds with Martin’s family. He begins to see hope and beauty in the humans’ imperfection, and begins to question the very mission that brought him there.

Praised by The New York Times as a “novelist of great seriousness and talent,” author Matt Haig delivers an unlikely story about human nature and the joy found in the messiness of life on Earth. The Humans is a funny, compulsively readable tale that playfully and movingly explores the ultimate subject—ourselves.
 

About Matt Haig

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Matt Haig’s first novel for young readers, Samuel Blink and the Forbidden Forest, won the UK’s Blue Peter Book of the Year Award and the Gold Smarties Award. He is also the author of various adult novels, including The Labrador Pact and The Radleys. Reviewers have called his writing “totally engrossing,” “touching, quirky and macabre,” and “so surprising and strange it vaults into a realm of his own.” His books have been translated into twenty-five languages. He lives in York, England, and assures us he has never, ever been a cat—despite rumors that he was once a rather grumpy ginger tabby named Jeffrey.Stacy Curtis finds it purr-fectly impawsible he’s ever been a cat. He is, however, a cartoonist, illustrator, printmaker, and twin who has illustrated more than twenty-five books for children, including the New York Times bestseller The 7 Habits of Happy Kids. He and his wife, Jann, life in the Chicago area and happily share their home with two dogs, Derby and Inky, and no cats.
 
Published July 2, 2013 by Simon & Schuster. 321 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Humor & Entertainment, Science Fiction & Fantasy. Fiction
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Critic reviews for The Humans
All: 5 | Positive: 4 | Negative: 1

Kirkus

Below average
on May 05 2013

A fish-out-of water mashup where the water is Earth, and the fish is an extraterrestrial...A saccharine novel.

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Guardian

Excellent
Reviewed by Words Are Life on Aug 30 2015

I can’t explain how much I love this book, my favourite book. That would require something beyond words. But it gave me a sense of understanding, of belonging and hope when I was lost - and if that’s not enough to convince you to read The Humans, then I don’t know what is.

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Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Harry Ritchie on May 15 2013

...it's a mark of how funny and clever the rest of his novel is that Haig just about gets away with the love-is-truth guff. For all its later outbreaks of Vonnadorian mawkishness, The Humans still deserves to live long and prosper.

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Publishers Weekly

Excellent
on May 20 2013

...the wonder and humor with which the protagonist approaches life, and the many emotions and discoveries he experiences, are worth getting a bit weepy over.

Read Full Review of The Humans | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

The Maine Edge

Good
Reviewed by Allen Adams on Jul 03 2013

“The Humans” is a wonderful piece of satiric sci-fi, using the concepts of the genre in a manner both engaging and effective. It’s a tale of an alien who learns to be human – a lesson even the best of us might enjoy being taught once again.

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Reader Rating for The Humans
83%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 329 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


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