Andrew Goss

Disasters bring out the best and the worst...

The Humanitarian

a novel for our times

The earthquake came without warning that Saturday morning. It struck the mountains of northern Pakistan
at 8.52am on October 8, 2005, during the holy month

of Ramadan.

Villages were shaken from their footings, spilling into the yawning valleys below, or were buried by landslide as entire slopes dislodged and slipped from the mountainside. In less than 30 seconds the fragile infrastructure of Pakistan's north-western Himalayan communities had been destroyed...

"For most people, mercifully, natural disasters are things that happen on the telly, to other people. The Humanitarian takes
you 'there' - to a place where ordinary people are left to fathom the unfathomable. Goss's intimate interweaving of fact and
fiction around the 2005 Kashmir earthquake disaster takes readers to places they will never forget and, God-willing, they
will never have to go."

Peter Foster, Financial Times

'Even if just one person's life is changed
for the better,
then it is all worthwhile'

The Humanitarian a novel by Andrew Goss



What's the story about?


A devastating earthquake strikes without warning, sweeping away the fragile infrastructure of Pakistan’s Himalayan sub-ranges within a few seconds. The earthquake claims the lives of 80,000 people, injures some 100,000, leaving more than 3.5 million without shelter. And the bitter winter is moving in.


Against this backdrop, a multi-national team of aid workers is drawn

from across the world in a race against time to assist survivors under intense physical and emotional pressure.

The events following the disaster, their effect on local communities and the mix of international staff thrown together in extreme circumstances, are seen through the eyes of British journalist John Cousins, the accidental ‘humanitarian’ of the story.


Cousins finds himself at the centre of conflicting interests played out against the highly charged disaster scenario. The events he bears witness to in the remote mountain areas are both heart-breaking and inspiring. 

Above all, The Humanitarian is a compelling story of courage, compassion and political intrigue set against the backdrop of a devastating natural disaster.

Published by The Book Guild

View across the Indus

Who is the author?


Andrew Goss is a journalist, writer and humanitarian reporter. His work has led him to travel extensively and for several years he lived in Pakistan, where he supported the aid and development sector.

He is a passionate advocate of education for the world’s

poorest, and specifically girls and young women.


Andrew lives in Leicester, in the heart of England, with his partner Claire, a nurse and former aid worker.

Between them they have six children:

David, Johnathon, Emily, Ella, Lucy and Jalal.

Andrew's dream is that one day the poorest across the southern hemisphere are freed from poverty through greater equality

of opportunity and fairer distribution of wealth – and that finally we learn to live as one.

He hopes one day to return to Pakistan.


If you would like to order The Humanitarian, or want

to know more about what lies behind the novel,

please don't hesitate to drop the author a line.