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The Human’s Back-of-Book Description
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.
I don’t remember exactly how I heard about The Humans, but I added it to my GoodReads “To Read” list a really long time ago. Then I looked for it in my local bookstore about a year ago but they didn’t have it, and I guess I forgot about it for a while.
But then, I used the list to spend a Barnes & Noble gift card online (thanks, step-mom!) and I bought it. Finally! After about a year and a half of first hearing about it.
And you guys…. It was worth the wait. I have reviewed quite a few of books on this blog. But I am not exaggerating when I say that The Humans by Matt Haig was the best book I have read in a very long time!
I was instantly hooked with the smart, witty writing and the way the author talks to the reader as if he is the character and the character is sincerely interested in relaying the story.
It’s a funny, insightful account of what it’s like to be a human. He describes the ridiculousness that is our everyday lives; the silly things we stress about, the strange things we enjoy, and so on.
He also does an incredible job of pointing out the absurd ways we interact with each other and constantly miscommunicate with one another.
And he does this all in such a way that you feel like you’re realizing something … like this isn’t just a funny story about an alien, but a story about yourself and why you sometimes feel like you don’t fit in.
It is so good you guys!
On top of all of that, the characters are interesting – not just the main character but his “family”, too. Plus, the main character and the “son” definitely grow and develop, which is always nice in a book.
The dialogue is smooth and believable while being just awkward enough that it’s funny and relateable.
The storyline is good – never a dull moment. There’s plenty of suspense, intrigue, and a little bit of drama.
And the writing was perfect. There were so many great lines in this book that I am considering writing a second post just to include them all!
Favorite Quotes From The Humans
“People search for external values and meaning in a world which not only can’t provide it but is also indifferent to their quest.”
“The point of love was to help you survive… To stop looking and start living.”
“If getting drunk was how people forgot they were mortal, then hangovers were how they remembered.”
“The single biggest act of bravery or madness anyone can do is the act of change.”
“Everything in human life was a test. That was why they all looked so stressed out.”
I absolutely loved it. I couldn’t put it down. And then, when I reached the end, I was a little sad for a few days. Seriously 5 out of 5 stars, for sure.
In my opinion, there’s not a person in the world who wouldn’t feel like they benefited from reading The Humans, no matter what genre you prefer.
And now, I can’t wait to read more of Matt Haig’s work to see if all of his books are this incredible!
Have you read this or any of his other stuff? If so, please let me know what you thought in the comments!
Thank you so much for reading the review! If you know people who might enjoy the book, please share.
Also, consider pinning one of the fantastic quotes below!