The Three-Body Problem is the first chance for English-speaking readers to experience this multiple award winning phenomenon from China’s most beloved science fiction author, Liu Cixin.
Mona : Badly Written and Ill Conceived Science Fiction with a Few Interesting IdeasI’m not sure I read the same book as everyone else. This got lots of four and five star reviews here on Goodreads. Plus, it’s been nominated for both Hugo and Nebula awards.As often happens, I’m not with the majority opinion here. I give it two stars.I’m not sure if the problem was the translation, or the original text, or both. (Unfortunately I only have the audio for this, so I can’t quote the text here).But I found th
Rick Riordan : Adult sci-fi. By Chinese author Cixin Liu, The Three-Body Problem takes a classic scenario — contact with alien life — and cranks up the sinister factor to maximum. The story begins during the Cultural Revolution when young Ye Wenjie watches her scientist father beaten to death by fervent revolutionaries. She is sent off for hard labor at a re-education camp, but by a strange twist of fate gets a chance to work at a top secret government project seeking out extraterrestrial life. Fast forward
Bradley : From the opening, I was struck by how much history I didn’t know about China’s Cultural Revolution. It might be obvious to anyone growing up in those parts, of course, but I was almost lost in that story long before I saw that there was anything sci-fi about the novel. This is a good thing. It speaks of good writing.And then things changed. I became a frog in a pot. Small hints accumulate, surrounded by mathematical problems both fundamental and curious. And then the MC’s sanity is questioned. I 刚
Brendon Schrodinger : Originally published in it’s native Chinese in 2008, The Three-Body Problem has now been translated for English speakers to read and enjoy. It is the first volume in a hugely successful SF trilogy that has proved to be a popular seller in China.No matter what our opinions are on the government of China, we all know that they have a history of controlling the media. It was not so long ago that I was reading articles on how even SF stories may not be published if they contain certain themes or SF
Adina : The Three-Body Problem was the best SF novel that I’ve read so far. Admittedly, I did not read a lot of them. However, I can recognize when I encounter a special gem and this one definitely is unique in its world building. Moreover, it is very well written (and translated) which, unfortunately, it is not always the case with SF novels, especially with the classics. The first chapters take place in the Chinese Cultural revolution and I thought to be a harrowing experience which perfectly introduc
Manju : “To effectively contain a civilization’s development and disarm it across such a long span of time, there is only one way; kill its science.” The only thing that I knew about this book prior to reading it was that it revolves around alien invasion. So I prepared myself for spaceship, some cool weapons and amazing battle scenes. All in all I was looking for Guardians of the Galaxy in book form. But how wrong I was! I am so glad that all my hopes were dashed within first few chapters.What started
Riku Sayuj : The most intricate alien-invasion story I have read. It is erudite, it is playful and it makes you struggle with the big questions throughout. It has everything going for it, except, maybe, romance. Read it.
Rachel the Book Harl : 2.5 starsThere has been an enormous amount of buzz and accolades surrounding Cixin Liu’s The Three-Body Problem. It has been nominated for numerous awards, including a 2015 Hugo Award for Best Novel. Does it deserve all the hype? In some respects I can see why it has garnered so much praise. The science is fun, there are some interesting philosophical concepts, and the world-building is also interesting. However, that for me is where the praise ends. Where the book fails is in the basic fundamen
Jody : How would humanity react if we found out we are not alone in the universe? Not only that, if we knew that alien civilization was on its way to earth to invade our planet? How would we react? How would YOU react? The Three-Body Problem is a unique sci-fi novel set in China. It takes place over several time periods from the 1960’s to present time. The story begins during the Chinese Cultural Revolution in the late 1960’s, and focuses on how the intellectual society was hard-pressed and assaulted.
TS Chan : 4.5 stars.This critically well-acclaimed science fiction novel certainly deserves its laurels. “Wildly imaginative, really interesting..” so proclaimed Barack Obama about this trilogy. From what I can gather after reading this book, I already wholeheartedly agree. The Three-Body Problem is a truly unique and original science fiction within the realm of plausibility. Melding real-world science, history, philosophy, religion and fantastical ideas, this novel delivers a beautifully-written (and tra
Stuart : The Three-Body Problem: Particle physics, the rise and fall of civilizations, and alien contactOriginally published atFantasy LiteratureThe Three-Body Problem was first published in China back in 2008 and translated into English in 2014. It got a lot of attention and was put on the Hugo Award ballot this year when another author pulled out. Cixin Liu’s book has a lot going on and requires your full attention. So after listening to the audiobook during a trip to the East Coast I realized I couldn
Michael : Brilliant and thrilling, fun and mind expanding. If this is what Chinese science fiction writers bring to the table, feed my head! This won the Hugo Award for 2015, a fitting outcome to the controversies surrounding the controversies around their selection process. This tale deals with the classic issue of first contact with an alien civilization. The plot evolves as a mystery that engages a nanotech scientist Wang. He starts to encounter strange phenomena such as a progression of numbers appear
Elizabeth : I requested and received a copy of this book for free from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Three Body Problem by Cixin Liu is the first book from the biggest selling science fiction series in China, and thanks to this translation we finally get to see why.This is a science fiction book that revolves around a concept in physics where three masses in space will never fall into a stable or predictable orbit around each other. It’s a problem that mathematicians and phys
Warwick : In an afterword, Liu expresses his opinion that science fiction should not be used to make social commentary but should instead restrict itself to playing with ideas of science and technology. I was surprised to see that because Three Body had struck me (tentatively, since I know little about China) as an especially Chinese novel, with much to say about how societies should be organised. The portrait of an ‘authoritarian’ alien civilisation, where individuality is repressed in favour of homogeno
Kaora : Yes, the entire history of humankind has been fortunate. From the Stone Age till now, no real crisis has occurred. We’ve been very lucky. But if it’s all luck, then it has to end one day. Let me tell you: It’s ended. Prepare for the worst.This book first appeared on my radar after receiving good reviews from quite a few people I know. It is originally written in Chinese, but is being translated to English. While a few of the metaphors were slightly awkward, I felt the translation held up pretty
Scott : Three Body Problem made me curious about mathematics. This is no small feat.I see math like Michael Bay sees movies that aren’t based on a series of explosions – as something to be minimised in one’s life and if possible, completely avoided.The titular three body problem in Cixin’s book is a mind-melter of a physics conundrum where the movements of three gravitationally linked bodies are near impossible to predict. Cixin spins this problem into a fascinating scenario with an interstellar scope a