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How to Pass as Human Hardcover – Illustrated, October 20, 2015
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About the Author
- ASIN : 1616557656
- Publisher : Dark Horse Books; Illustrated edition (October 20, 2015)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 240 pages
- ISBN-10 : 9781616557652
- ISBN-13 : 978-1616557652
- Item Weight : 1.45 pounds
- Dimensions : 6.25 x 0.9 x 9.27 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #837,507 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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This is a book I couldn't put down and I cannot stop recommending to people. Described as a "science-fiction/humor novel", it is a scientifically based, humorous story told through fictitious lenses. But much deeper than that is a tale of us all; regardless if the book is told by android or human, read by robot or mammal, one thing can certainly be gleaned in the pages of How To Pass as Human: We are all learners, we all have an infinite number of questions, and the journey to understanding and our ability to interpret ourselves is only half of the fun, but potentially our only justifiable purpose. 5 stars.
Less has been said about the book as a pseudo-psychological and philosophical look at the human condition, boiling it down to its core essence of optimizing our ability to survive and reproduce, only oversimplifying at times to keep it fun. The text is full of humorous but cutting observations of everything from work, office politics, and technology, to gender differences, reproductive habits, and love. The section on “Breaking Rules” emphasizes that to appear human one should break rules whenever possible. For those interested in more than the great narrative and entertaining field guide, there is plenty of compelling, deep stuff here.
This reader particularly enjoyed the Venn diagrams and flow charts – “How to Choose a Religion” and “How to Understand the Basics of Human Mating Communication” are especially fun.
Top reviews from other countries
You see, I think a lot like the main character, Android 0. I observe and analyse what other people do. Unlike Android 0, however, I analyse people to understand what works for them, what doesn't work from them, and then try to learn from their mistakes. On the other hand, Android 0 observes people to try understand the reasoning behind their actions in order to pass as human, then throws in a massive amount of judgement regarding what humans do. When I tried to put myself in his shoes, every time he judged human habits (i.e. all the time), I myself felt like I was above everyone else, and I hated this feeling. I worked a lot on reducing that part of me and this book brought a lot of it back.
I get it, this book is humorous and exaggerates everything for comedic effect, but all humour comes from somewhere. Just like someone consistently making racist jokes is probably a racist themselves, someone making judgemental jokes about the world around them is, at their core, very judgemental themselves. Whenever I laughed at one of these infographics about humans, I felt exactly this way - like my long-muted biases and opinions about people around me came rushing back. I was feeding them again. I had to dissociate myself from the main character at some point before my own personality suffered any more damage. I stopped reading the humorous infographics.
After that, the book became a very simple love story from the perspective of an unusual person in a confusing world finding themselves along the way. Something that's been done before over and over again. I could've read a much better version of such a story for less money if I wanted that.
I ultimately put the book down at page 130 because I wasn't interested in the restt.
This is the story I'm reviewing. This is the story I'd rate at 1 star, but I've got to give Nic some credit for crafting a character which resembles my thinking process so closely.
If the main character was more likeable from the start, I'd give it an extra star, bringing it to an average 3 star rating. Getting anything above that would require the meat of the book (the actual story) having a LOT more work out into it.
If this review sounds too judgemental, there is probably a reason for that :)
Android 0's well-written narrative provides all the information I need to thoroughly pass as a lazy, self-deceptive and irrational bag of water and electrolytes! The various sections are funny, well thought-out and as highly intelligent as one would expect from an android with more processing power than the legendary Marvin the Paranoid.
They are interspersed with a first-person narrative that is a short, although very interesting, description of Android 0's experiences whilst attempting to pass as human. Having read the book several times, I now know to refer to this novel with phrases such as 'thrilling', 'exciting', 'sensational' and the ever-asinine 'it's a page-turner!'. (note to others, this does raise the question of whether humans actually understand how books work. More research to be conducted).
I am now popular at work with the same colleagues who also complain about me in my absence , am unsuccessful with the opposite gender due to a perfect impression of over-inebriation at social functions, and am considered fabulously mediocre by all!
Thanks Android 0!