Sebastian James Murphy is twenty years, six months and two days old. He loves swimming, fried eggs and Billy Ocean. Sebastian is autistic. And lonely.
Veronica wants her son Sebastian to be happy, and she wants the world to accept him for who he is. She is also thinking about paying a professional to give him what he desperately wants.
Violetta is a high-class escort, who steps out into the night thinking only of money. Of her nursing degree. Paying for her dad’s care. Getting through the dark.
When these three lives collide, and intertwine in unexpected ways, everything changes. For everyone.
Both heartbreaking and heartwarming, This Is How We Are Human is a powerful, moving and thoughtful drama about a mother’s love for her son, about getting it wrong when we think we know what’s best, about the lengths we go to care for family and to survive.
‘Storytelling at its finest, Louise Beech is a beguiling wordsmith’ Amanda Prowse
“Though This is How We Are Human is fiction, the premise was inspired by my friends, 20-year-old Sean, who is autistic, and his mum Fiona. Fiona had spoken to me about how much Sean longed to meet a girl and have sex. No one talks about this, she said – the difficulties navigating romance often faced by those on the spectrum. It ’s an issue that I wanted to explore. Fiona and Sean encouraged me and guided me through the book; Sean regularly consulted on dialogue, rightly insisting that his voice was heard, was strong, and was accurate. I cannot thank my extraordinary friends enough for their help and support.” Louise Beech
Not long from now, in a recognisable yet changed London, Signy and Matthew lead a dull, difficult life. They’ve only really stayed together for the sake of their six year old son, Jed. But they’re surviving, just about. Until the day the technology that runs their world stops working. Unable to use their phones or pay for anything, Matthew assumes that this is just a momentary glitch in the computers that now run the world.
But then the electricity and gas are cut off. Even the water stops running. And the pollination drones – vital to the world, ever since the bees all died – are behaving oddly. People are going missing. Soldiers are on the streets. London is no longer safe.
A shocking incident sends Signy and Jed on the run, desperate to flee London and escape to the small village where Signy grew up. Determined to protect her son, Signy will do almost anything to survive as the world falls apart around them. But she has no idea what is waiting for them outside the city…
Join the creators of Queer: A Graphic History (‘Could totally change the way you think about sex and gender’ VICE) on an illustrated journey of gender exploration.
We’ll look at how gender has been ‘done’ differently – from patriarchal societies to trans communities – and how it has been viewed differently – from biological arguments for sex difference to cultural arguments about received gender norms. We’ll dive into complex and shifting ideas about masculinity and femininity, look at non-binary, trans and fluid genders, and examine the intersection of experiences of gender with people’s race, sexuality, class, disability and more.
Tackling current debates and tensions, which can divide communities and even cost lives, we’ll look to the past and the future to ask how might we approach gender differently, in more socially constructive, caring ways.
Kahlaran hasn’t had a djinn in decades. At least none that they know of.
Zaira has so far successfully avoided being found out as a wind spirit, steering clear of trouble and living the life of an ordinary human. Her luck finally runs out when she meets one of her own kind: a water djinn somehow hell-bent on evicting her for a murder she didn’t commit. Without her past djinn powers and the whole city against her, the odds of a happy ending are quite slim.
Luckily, she’s not alone. Forming a hasty alliance with fellow scapegoat and hot-headed mercenary Ezair, the pair has to navigate through the slums and shady brothels of the city, fighting guards, ghouls, magicians, and occasionally each other. But can they really overcome an enemy capable of peeking through every puddle, cup, and teardrop?