Lead Review

  • Book: This Is How We Are Human
  • Location: East Yorkshire
  • Author: Louise Beech

Review Author: Tina Hartas



The author is a gifted writer who always chooses a storyline that is just that little bit different, so often with a focus of social engagement, which gives her writing a really empathic quality.

In this novel she gets behind the life of Sebastian, who is a young man with autism, who is craving a relationship with a woman, but given his directness, it is not something that is likely to happen of its own accord.

His mother, Veronica, is clearly a doting parent – his father died in earlier years – and the care she gives him, counterbalanced by the inevitable frustrations and vexation, is described with sympathy and nuance.

There is Isabelle who is training as a nurse, specialising in patients with learning difficulties. She has another life working as Violetta because she needs huge sums of money to help care for her father, who is seriously ill.

As a reader one can, in a way, anticipate largely where this story may go and there are some nice, poignant elements feathered into the narrative that make it an interesting read – it is not without its emotional challenges along the way, however.

Back to book

Sign up to receive our e-newsletter

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Enter the 2021TripFiction 'Sense of Place' Creative Writing Competition!

A story in which the location plays as important a role as the rest of your words.

2,500 word maximum, 750 word minimum

Judges include Victoria Hislop and Rosanna Ley

First Prize of £1,000 / US$1,350

Prizes total £1,750 / US$2,362 

Winning entry published on TripFiction site and publicised on Social Media

Entries close 6th November 2021