Human Traces begins in 1876 when we are introduced to the two central characters as teenagers. Jacques Rebiere is the son of a Breton forester and dreams of acquiring an education to cure his older brother Olivier who is a madman and is kept in the stables shackled to a wall.
Thomas Midwinter is a young Englishman who has a lifelong ambition to work “with the mind”. They meet in France – both medical students and become lifelong friends pledging to work together to unearth the workings of the mind.
The story spans several decades and continents and describes the evolving world of physiology and how patients are treated according to their social standing and symptoms.
Human Traces scored 8.75
Report by Claire Lampough