The Three-Body Problem

{5/5} “But I can sense the plan, a very comprehensive, intricate plan: damage scientific research installations, kill scientists, drive scientists like you crazy and make you commit suicide — but the main goal is to misdirect your thoughts until you’re even more foolish than ordinary people.”

The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu, published in 2006

Wang Miao starts seeing numbers on the photographs he develops. But when his wife takes photos the numbers are not there. They’re obviously a countdown — hours, minutes, seconds. Then he starts seeing the numbers in front of him all the time. When he talks to Shen Yufei at the Frontiers of Science, she tells him to stop his nanomaterial testing. He stops it, because maintenance is needed anyway — and the numbers go away.

It’s about people who experienced terrible things during the Cultural Revolution. It’s about people who will do anything to further their goal, including murder. It’s about people who believe that humanity is evil and aliens should conquer the planet.

This is the 1st SF book I’ve read that’s been translated from Chinese. The language has a sparkle to it — undoubtedly partially due to the author and partially the translator.

The translator, Ken Liu, helpfully includes footnotes explaining references than non-Chinese people wouldn’t get.

This is the 1st book I’ve read by Liu. I will read at least 2 more, the sequels to this one.

This entry was posted on Monday, July 5th, 2021 at 6:40 pm and is filed under Reviews of books. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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