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Book Review

Book Cover

Being Human
The Road


Author: Simon Guerrier
Titan Books
RRP: £7.99
ISBN: 978 1 846 07898 9
Available 04 February 2010

Mitchell, George and Annie are a trio of twenty something’s, sharing a house in Bristol, trying to live lives of social normality, which is harder than it sounds when you are respectively a vampire, werewolf and a ghost...

Being Human: The Road is the first in a series of spin off novels from the successful comedy/supernatural series, the book was written by Simon Guerrier.

With the second series still on the television a number of characters have been introduced, which I don’t believe are in the show, that said the books are self referential to the series, so it puts these stories somewhere during or after the second series. Although the three books are linked - I already made the mistake of reading them in reverse order, the number on the books spine should have given it away - they work equally well as stand-alone novels.

Out of the three novels Guerrier has gone for a combination of a murder mystery and haunted house theme and while there is humour in the book The Road is an altogether darker piece of prose.

The story starts with a Ghost coming back through the door. At first Gemma seems to be a lost soul in need of help and George, ever the gentleman, thinks the house trio should do just this. Annie has other ideas, as Gemma slowly starts to take over the house, her occasional lapses of niceness even has Mitchell digging in the hospital's archives to discover the connection between Gemma’s son's (Lee) suicide and a group of kids who lapsed into comas after they ingested dodgy drugs.

There were many things to like about the novel, not least of which was that Guerrier obviously approached the story not as a spin off, they are usually pretty linear and somewhat formulaic, but as a proper novel. Even though it is alluded to fairly early on in the narrative that there is something odd about Gemma’s reappearance, it came as a pleasantly genuine surprise when all the plot threads were drawn together.

Guerrier demonstrates a good eye for character and a good ear for dialogue; therefore the three main characters are true to their television counterparts. New characters are introduced which will run the length of the three novels. Kaz is more muted in the first book, but the seeds of George’s subsequent problems with fatherhood are sown here.

So an above average book for a tie-in and genuinely a pleasure to read just as a novel.


Charles Packer

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