Human Traces and over 2 million other books are available for Amazon Kindle . Learn more

Buy New

or
Sign in to turn on 1-Click ordering.
Buy Used
Used - Very Good See details
Price: 1.95

or
 
   
More Buying Choices
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Sorry, this item is not available in
Image not available for
Colour:
Image not available

 
Start reading Human Traces on your Kindle in under a minute.

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

Human Traces [Paperback]

Sebastian Faulks
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (111 customer reviews)
RRP: 8.99
Price: 6.29 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
You Save: 2.70 (30%)
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
Only 12 left in stock (more on the way).
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
Want it Wednesday, 23 April? Choose Express delivery at checkout. Details

Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition 4.31  
Hardcover --  
Paperback 6.29  
MP3 CD, Audiobook 31.54  
Audio Download, Abridged 10.65 or Free with Audible.co.uk 30-day free trial
Amazon.co.uk Trade-In Store
Did you know you can use your mobile to trade in your unwanted books for an Amazon.co.uk Gift Card to spend on the things you want? Visit the Books Trade-In Store for more details or check out the Trade-In Amazon Mobile App Guidelines on how to trade in using a smartphone. Learn more.

Book Description

6 July 2006

As young boys both Jacques Rebière and Thomas Midwinter become fascinated with trying to understand the human mind. As psychiatrists, their quest takes them from the squalor of the Victorian lunatic asylum to the crowded lecture halls of the renowned Professor Charcot in Paris; from the heights of the Sierra Madre in California to the plains of unexplored Africa.

As the concerns of the old century fade and the First World War divides Europe, the two men's volatile relationship develops and changes, but is always tempered by one exceptional woman; Thomas's sister Sonia.

Moving and challenging in equal measure, Human Traces explores the question of what kind of beings men and women really are.


Frequently Bought Together

Human Traces + The Fatal Englishman: Three Short Lives + Girl At The Lion d'Or
Price For All Three: 20.47

Buy the selected items together


Product details

  • Paperback: 800 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage; New Ed edition (6 July 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0099458268
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099458265
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (111 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 106,907 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Sebastian Faulks was born in April 1953. Before becoming a full-time writer in 1991, he worked as a journalist. His French trilogy - The Girl at the Lion d'Or, Birdsong and Charlotte Gray (1989-1997) - established him in the front rank of British novelists. UK sales of Birdsong exceed 2,500,000 copies, and for this novel he was named "Author of the Year" by the British Book Awards in 1995. It is regularly voted one of the nation's favourite books. Charlotte Gray has also sold over a million copies and was filmed with Cate Blanchett in the main part.

Product Description

Review

"An extraordinary novel of magnificent scope" (Evening Standard)

"Faulks is beyond doubt a master" (Financial Times)

"His most ambitious novel yet... Love, loyalty, courage, compassion, goodness...these are the poles around which his always skilful storytelling revolves" (Independent)

"Shocking and enlightening...touching and affecting" (Daily Mail)

"He is the best novelist of his generation" (Scotsman)

Book Description

Moving and challenging in equal measure, Human Traces explores the question of what kind of beings men and women really are.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
Browse Sample Pages
Front Cover | Copyright | Excerpt | Back Cover
Search inside this book:

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
53 of 54 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting but about 200 pages too long! 7 Feb 2006
Format:Hardcover
Unfortunately I have to agree with the comments from the reviewer below - far too much detail. I started Human Traces eagerly and found it to be very interesting, particularly the descriptions of typical mental asylums in the 19th Century. But…. after about 200 pages my interest started to wane. I don’t wish to do the author a disservice as the time and effort Faulks has spent researching psychiatry is clearly evident and incredibly impressive, however I picked this book from the shelf thinking it was going to be an interesting (and, knowing Faulks, possibly thought provoking) work of fiction, not a dissertation on the history of mental illness. But unfortunately that’s what it turned out to be. At certain points Faulks literally transcribes speeches and lectures from the characters regarding their thoughts on psychiatry; one of which lasts for 22 pages!
Aside from that, I did enjoy the plot and enjoyed seeing how life treated Jacques and Thomas over the years. Ultimately this is a very interesting book and I’m sure those who have a particular interest in the field of neurology and psychology would hugely enjoy this book, but it was just too didactic for my liking.
Was this review helpful to you?
65 of 68 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Most wonderful book I have read for a long time 18 Dec 2006
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book was recommended to me, but before I started reading it I foolishly read some of the reviews on Amazon. This put me off starting it and then while I was reading it I kept waiting for it to become hard going or boring. It never did. I will say as others have said that sometimes the text and ideas are hard to follow and need reading over a couple of times, but these sections only last a few pages and soon you are back reading the beautiful family saga which the book ultimately is.

Sebastian Faulks has taken his obvious interest in the thoughts and philosophies of humans and woven them into a deeply human and touching story. I loved all the characters and cared for them. It was one of those books which I couldn't wait to get to bed to read and woke up early in the morning to see what would happen next.

It explores what it means to be human which although set in the past is very relevant to today. It gives insight into scientific research and the ways that new ideas are put forward then discounted or fall out of fashion. It made me realise that we are still a long long way from understanding the human mind one hundred years later.

I thought the ending was perfect and very satisfying. An incredibly rewarding book which makes you marvel at the skill of the writer.
Was this review helpful to you?
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Readable Traces 8 Jun 2006
Format:Paperback
I got this at Christmas, and have just finished it five months later, which gives you an idea of how motivated I was to keep reading it! Not that it's bad - it had many interesting parts, and definitely got better as it went on. I just found that for the most part, the main objective of the book was an exposition of psychiatry and psychoanalysis around the beginning of the 20th century, with a novel tacked on the side. Really, to hold the reader's interest, it should have been the other way round - the novel, with its characters, themes, narrative to the foreground, and to explore the medical themes within that framework.

As it was, I found the characters dull and flat, and the narrative drive non existent - for much of the book, there was no drama, no conflict - everyone's lives went by without anything particularly interesting happening apart from medical lectures and patient examinations, much of which I have to admit I found just far too technical to really want to read.

A shame, because it is obviously very well written, and the good bits really held my attention. By far the best section of the book was Thomas's visit to Africa, which was interesting both in terms of what would happen and whether the expedition would make it back safely, and in the discovery of the footprints and Thomas's subsequent discourse on our ancestors and the voices they heard, which was both amazingly thought-provoking and incredibly moving. Daniel's experiences in the war were also a highlight - as was Thomas's announcement to the family that he has Alzheimer's, which was the most moving part of the book.

So in summary - all the bits in lecture halls or consulting rooms: too technical. All the bits about the idyllic life in the schloss: too boring. Everything else: great!
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars lost it somewhere 11 Aug 2006
Format:Paperback
I'm a fan of Sebastian Faulks, through time I've managed to read all his other books so when i saw this one on the shelf i quickly picked it up. Having just finished it, I have to say i was disappointed.

Though i thought the idea of the story was good and i did get into the first chapters, there were pages and pages of waffle! I was at a loss to find myself reading entire chapters on medical psychological philosophy! I felt the changes in the characters were poorly explained and the ending was terrible! Parts of the book were good & did engage me and I felt I could appreciate what he was desperately trying to convey through the character but in the end I found myself frustrated.

What a waste of a good story line and a potentially fab read.

I've thoroughly enjoyed his previous work and would recommend the Girl at the Lion D'or & The Fatal Englishman, but sadly Human Traces doesn't come near Faulks previous excellence!

I hope he comes back with a book that matches his earlier style & elegance.
Comment | 
Was this review helpful to you?
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Were these reviews helpful?   Let us know
Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
This is the first book of read since high school, I'm not a book person. I could not put it down! It kept my interest all the way through. Read more
Published 7 days ago by Andrew Docherty
5.0 out of 5 stars From proto-humans to French nineteenth century neuropsychiatry.
A gripping tale of family loves and (lack of) loyalty, married to a description of late nineteenth century neuropsychiatry. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Deadhead Giles
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent
As usual from Sebastian Falkes an extremely well written novel. With interesting characters, emotional involvement and insight into history of thinking of mental illness. Read more
Published 3 months ago by MRS J L BAXTER
4.0 out of 5 stars excellent
Very interesting book. I knew nothing of the subject of psychology but I know something now.
A bit random and disjointed in places but a great read.
Published 3 months ago by Noel hourihan
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing book.
Fabulous book with enormous insight into the human mind and behaviour. There is a great deal of detail but well worth persevering with. Read more
Published 4 months ago by L A Casey
4.0 out of 5 stars Bought as ChritmasPresent
Book arrived in good time and good condition. As it was purchased as a Christmas present it is yet to reach its final destination.
Published 5 months ago by Pacer
3.0 out of 5 stars Would have been much better if properly edited!
There were some interesting merits about the book, and it is obvious that a great deal of time, research and effort went into writing it, but it was hundreds of pages too long, had... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Carlos
4.0 out of 5 stars A book that stays with you
This is a fascinating book from both a scientific and a spiritual perspective of what it is to be human. Lots of food for thought.
Published 7 months ago by Kelly Jenner
3.0 out of 5 stars Melancholic tale
This is a huge novel at almost 800 pages, and is probably over long for the plot and the story it carries. Read more
Published 8 months ago by markr
4.0 out of 5 stars Caulks at his best
Excellent read, although the details in some of the long speeches and letters, is a bit intense:at one point, not being a scientist, I nearly lost the will to live! Read more
Published 8 months ago by Christopher Elliott
Search Customer Reviews
Only search this product's reviews
ARRAY(0xb4cb4234)

Customer Discussions

This product's forum
Discussion Replies Latest Post
No discussions yet

Ask questions, Share opinions, Gain insight
Start a new discussion
Topic:
First post:
Prompts for sign-in
 

Search Customer Discussions
Search all Amazon discussions
   


Look for similar items by category


Feedback