By Kilgore Gagarin

Opening salvo top notch Science Fiction series


First, this does not read like a translation. Ken Liu’s translation of Cixin Liu’s original Chinese language novel, “San ti” (2008) comes across seamlessly in the spare, translated English prose (though I cannot speak as to the authenticity of the translation, rather, just the style). Ken Liu sprinkles footnotes throughout the novel giving some useful background with regards to the Chinese Cultural Revolution of the 1960’s and 1970’s, as well as background in math and physics.




The plot’s political and scientific setting reminded me quite a bit of the writing of Gregory Benford, specifically, his novel Timescape. If I were to hazard a guess, if you like Benford’s writing, you’ll enjoy this novel. If you dislike Benford (he isn’t everyone’s cup of tea) you might want to pass on this. This is very much hard core, traditional science fiction. The backdrop of China’s Cultural Revolution gives a memorable setting. Cixin Liu’s personal experiences as a Chinese citizen (a young child – he was born in 1963) lends a degree of authenticity to that aspect of the novel.

政治和科学的小说情节的设定相当多的提醒我Gregory Benford(本福德)的作品,更确切的说,是他的小说《时间轴》。我曾经假设去斗胆猜测,假如你喜欢本福德的作品,你将会欣赏这部小说《三体》。假如你不喜欢本福德(他不是所有人的胃口)你也许想不考虑它。这是一个非常硬的核,传统科幻小说。中国文化大革命的背景给出了一些记忆的设定。作为一个中国公民(出生在1963年的他还是一个孩子)刘慈欣的个人经历给小说的面貌增加了一定程度的可信性。

Please, please, please read at least to the halfway point. Mr. Liu’s plot slowly and steadily increases the pace. I loved the entire book, but one fellow reader was going “meh” until she read enough to tell me SHE wants to read the entire series now. If you find yourself thinking, “What’s the big deal” just keep on going. This is a FUN read!


Note that this is the first of an original trilogy by the author, and I’m hooked. Try to avoid reviews that give too much of the plot away and just enjoy the work. Having never read this author before, I can see why he is one of the best selling science fiction writers in China. With this series I think he’s about to widen his audience.


Related Posts:

  • No Related Posts