The Humans – Lighthearted sci-fi to brighten your day

The Humans by Matt Haig

Select Sentence “Make sure, as often as possible, you are doing something you’d be happy to die doing.”

Book blurb: “It’s hardest to belong when you’re closest to home . . .

One wet Friday evening, Professor Andrew Martin of Cambridge University solves the world’s greatest mathematical riddle. Then he disappears.

When he is found walking naked along the motorway, Professor Martin seems different. Besides the lack of clothes, he now finds normal life pointless. His loving wife and teenage son seem repulsive to him. In fact, he hates everyone on the planet. Everyone, that is, except Newton. And he’s a dog.

Can a bit of Debussy and Emily Dickinson keep him from murder? Can the species which invented cheap white wine and peanut butter sandwiches be all that bad? And what is the warm feeling he gets when he looks into his wife’s eyes?”

My review

Wonderfully entertaining story about an alien from the planet Vonnadori who takes over a Professor Andrew Martin’s body and life. His aim to destroy all evidence that Andrew solved a major mathematical problem that could change the course of human history including any one that might know.

The beginning is filled with humour although in some places it feels like the author is trying to hard to be funny but as the story progresses this becomes more insightful into human nature. With the alien learning how pain and sorrow are part of life and how humans are flawed but also kind.

There is a 97 point list entitled Advice for a Human towards the end of the book which is brilliant.  They are points to live by , interspersed with humour.   I’m tempted to print it out and put on the fridge!

This is a book that I’m sure I will turn to in my darker days when depression clouds the mind to remind me we are all flawed and to carry on.  It is a book  I will read again.  Because even though it had predictable plotting and some of the humour got on my nerves, something about it  just resonated with me.

A tale filled with humour and philosophy. I’d recommend it to anyone who wants a lighthearted tale to brighten their day.


Kindle Edition, 304 pages
Published May 9th 2013 by Canongate Books

You can read an extract of the book on Matt Haig’s website.


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