A book of big and bold ideas, Humanly Possible is humane in approach and, more important, readable and worth reading, whether you agree with it or not ... Ms. Bakewell is wide-ranging, witty and compassionate.
[Bakewell] manages to wrangle seven centuries of humanist thought into a brisk narrative, resisting the traps of windy abstraction and glib oversimplification. But covering such enormous terrain means that Humanly Possible doesn’t quite have the bracing focus of her earlier work ... There is a beauty to this, even if it doesn’t quite answer the question of how to rein in all the godlike powers we have already unleashed.
At its core a tenderhearted story about the least tender of experiences: that of refugee children, separated from their parents and extended family, forced to grow up on their own in a foreign country ... Pin does an excellent job of portraying the loneliness and longing for family that the children experience ... Pin's prose is quietly powerful, her voice assured, her love for this fictional family apparent on every page.