The Three-Body Problem - SF, Chinese style

in #books2 months ago

I had heard of this book somewhere and decided to try it as an ebook from Google. It has been on my phone for ages, but I only just finished. I thought I had some way to go, but there are a lot of pages at the end with a preview of the next in the series. I did not realise it was a series to start with.

From the Google Play store.

Author Liu Cixin is Chinese and this is probably the first novel I have read by a Chinese author. It has won some awards and it does have some interesting ideas. It starts off during the Cultural Revolution and portrays that as being an unpleasant time with intellectuals being strictly controlled and even killed if they deviated from party dogma. A secret project involves interstellar communications.

There is some science in this book, but it may be stretched to fit the needs of the plot. There is also a computer game that involves the titular problem that relates to chaotic behaviour.

I will not spoil the plot, but you can real more on Wikipedia if you like.

I was interested to see where it went, but the characters did not engage me too much. Maybe it is the translation, but I found the style unusual and a bit stilted. It is well into the book before you find out what is going on, but then it is setting things up for the rest of the trilogy. I am not especially excited about reading the rest and I have other books to read. I think we should check out literature from other cultures, but it may be hard work.

Apparently a movie has been made of the book, but it has not been released yet. There is a movie of his other story The Wandering Earth on Netflix that I have yet to watch.

I can see a couple of people I know read it via Goodreads. They seemed to like it. It scores over 4/5 there, but I would rate is a 3/5 personally.


I read it. Stilted is a good description of the style. I suspect it is a translation thing. It did remind me of older sci-fi in that regard.

I have a friend who translates Chinese. I'll ask her if the original is much different.


Good idea. Make a post on it!



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I really hate it when you get a decent book for little to no cost and then you find out it is part of a series and you need to pay big bugs to finish it off. I just had that with a series. $1 for the first book, $8 a piece for the next two. I guess they need to make their money somehow though...

I don't always research the books I read. I remember when I finished Hyperion by Dan Simmons and was very surprised that there was another part to it. There are some really epic series out there, especially in science fiction and fantasy. It has to be something really good for me to keep going beyond 3 books. It seems some authors can write quicker than I can read :)

Either that or they use ghost writers :) I usually look for something that will immerse me. If it doesn't do that then there isn't much chance I am going to want to keep turning the page. Reading is hard for me, I am relatively slow and it feels more like work than enjoyment.

It tends to take me a while to get through a book as I'm doing other stuff, so it has to be worth it.

Hello @steevc I realize that you like this type of reading, we have that in common, and for me it is very nice to know!

It seems to me that this book has an interesting plot as set in a possible future or perhaps an alternate reality to ours, I have not read it but it catches my attention.

I don't know if you like to read Steampunk-style or futuristic novels, but I want to suggest that you read Ready Player One and Ready Player 2, by Ernest Cline, it is about the gaming world in a very attractive future, in the purest style of "a Brave New World "by Aldous Huxley.

There is a movie from the first book that is very faithful to what was published, maybe you might like to enjoy that kind of reading, personally I really enjoyed it.

And seriously I am pleased to know this other side of you, I am very happy that you have shared this !.

A warm handshake for you. And excuse my show of affection, I express it because I am really excited that you share these things :)




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I have read lots of science fiction from the classics of Jules Verne to some recent books. I haven't actually read Brave New World and maybe I should. I admire the imaginations of the authors. I'm not sure I could write my own book though.

Enjoy your reading.


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