I almost jettisoned this novel after twenty pages or so for being too kitschy -- just so self aware of how cute it was being. I pushed on because some of the lines were genuinely amusing and others were genuinely thought-provoking. Happily that continues throughout the book. While technically I guess this is a comic sci-fi novel (Douglas Adams, Kurt Vonnegut) it really doesn't feel like it. It's about family, the human condition and poetry. It's definitely the only book ever written that can't shut up talking about mathematics without being off-putting, if you can imagine that. It's a breezy, enjoyable read.
Favorite book in a long time. Gave me something to think about. Loved the characters and the setting. On the waiting list for other books by this author.
Matt Haig's books examine what it means to be human. In this favorite of mine, an alien sent to earth must learn to pass as a human. He reads an issue of "Cosmopolitan" magazine to learn English, and along the way becomes entranced by us human's ability to love, in all its forms. Wonderful!
This was an excellent read! The plot was engaging and exciting. It questions major forces that drive humans, well written with a great lineup of characters. A story you hope will not end, but eventually does :(
A clever and humorous science fiction tale of the differences of what it means to live in a 'civilization' versus what it means to actually be human. I want to read some Dickenson now!
The story of an alien who tries to make sense of what being human is all about.
Very enjoyable and moving book. Puts things into perspective and makes us appreciate what is great about humans.
Any story with the great mathematical physicist G.F.B. Riemann as a plot focus is grand! Seriously though, anyone interested in Einstein should read Riemann's original papers on quantum geometry - - and note the Riemann's wording, and Einstein's theory on relativity published 60 years later, are remarkably similar?
I loved the irony and social commentary. Great story!
An extraterrestrial was sent to earth to staunch math progress destined to move the human race forward. He takes on the identity of a professor. In his attitudes he carries from home his disdain for this primitive planet. Humans lack the intellect and mathematical modeling to never be hampered by suffering or even death. His observations of life on this earth are an illuminating look at ourselves. But, he discovers, there is another side of humans that gives their finite lives meaning.
ravenschild thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over
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