Sunday, December 4, 2016

The Three Body Problem

I'd heard good things about The Three Body Problem, and wanted to broaden my science fiction intake to some fresh perspectives, and so was very pleased by Liu Cixin's novel, translated from the original Chinese. It is a weird mixture of style between that odd 1950's impersonal feel that so many classic sci-fi novels have, weird magical fantasy, and a solid modern hard sci-fi. It takes more than half the novel to work out which it is. It spans 50 years of Chinese history, from the Cultural Revolution to the modern day, and tells the story of humanity's first contact with an alien species, and how people cope with the changes and threats that brings. For a western reader, it also gives a fascinating internal view of life for academics under the Chinese communist government. Well worth a read.

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