The Plot

(Critical Survey of Science Fiction and Fantasy)

More than Human is an expanded version of “Baby Is Three,” a novella published in Galaxy in 1952. The novella forms the central part of the novel, which deals with the joining of six people to form a new form of humanity, Homo gestalt.

The first section of the novel, “The Fabulous Idiot,” focuses on Lone, a mentally impaired man described as purely animal, who has parapsychic powers. Alicia and Evelyn Kew are sisters whose unconventional upbringing has kept Evelyn in a state of innocence. Evelyn’s psychic plea, “touch me,” is answered by Lone, but their merging is interrupted by her father, who kills Evelyn and beats Lone. Emotionally awakened and physically wounded, Lone is taken in by the Prodds, a farm family whose care makes him human for the first time.

When Mrs. Prodd becomes pregnant, Lone leaves the farm to live in a cave he constructs in the woods. There he is joined by Janie, a precocious five-year-old with telekinetic abilities, and Bonnie and Beanie, African American twin toddlers who are able to teleport. Mrs. Prodd dies in childbirth, and her baby is born with Down’s syndrome. Lone brings the Prodd child, whom he christens “Baby,” back to the cave, to become the computerlike repository of information for the new organism. Together, the four children and Lone function as a single being, Homo gestalt. To help the grieving Mr. Prodd, Lone and the children construct an...

(The entire section is 550 words.)