Capsule Review: Cixin Liu’s Three Body Problem

I just finished Cixin Liu’s Three Body Problem, the winner of the Hugo Prize in 2015. Liu is one of the most popular and prolific authors of science fiction in China, and this book is one of the first of his works to be translated into English.

I will try to avoid spoilers, since mystery is really one of the driving plot points of the novel.

Liu addresses a variety of themes, although thankfully never meditates too long on any one of them. Perhaps the structural theme of the novel is the juxtaposition of the micro versus the macro. The novel begins with vignettes from the Cultural Revolution involving one of the main characters, Ye Wenjie. We witness Ye’s struggle with the chaos

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