Book Reviews

The Three-Body Problem – Liu Cixin – Audible Book Review

The Three-Body Problem – Liu Cixin – Audible Book Review

The Three-Body Problem is the first book in the Remembrance of Earth’s Past trilogy which was written by Liu Cixin. It was first released as a book in 2008 after previously being serialized in Science Fiction World in 2006. Its English translation by Ken Liu was the first Asian novel to win a Hugo Award for Best Novel. The book starts with Ye Wenjie witnessing her father being beaten to death by the Red Guards during the Cultural Revolution. This act sets in motion a series of events that could potentially endanger life on our planet! Over the course of the novel, we learn about the mysterious virtual reality computer game called Three-Body, which is set on a planet called Trisolaris. The planet is in a solar system with three suns and the planet suffers from Stable and Chaotic Eras, as it is pulled by the gravitational forces of the three stars, suffering from massive excesses of heat and cold. The computer game may reflect the lives of an alien race from another galaxy who have contacted the earth!

Liu Cixin is a well-known science fiction writer who was born in Yangquan, Shanxi in 1963. He graduated with a degree in computer engineering in 1998 and worked for a period in a Power Plant in the Shanxi province. He was labelled as the first cyberpunk Chinese author, after the release of his debut novel China 2185, in 1989. To date, he has published 7 novels as well as various works of short fiction. Netflix is currently working on an adaptation of The Three-Body Problem in collaboration with China’s Yoozoo Pictures, although the production has been thrown into scandal.

The book has a very different perspective from what we are used to reading in work from the western world. This in itself is one of the fascinating elements of the novel. As with much science fiction work, the characters are not that well developed, but that is not the main point of interest or the intent of its writer. Instead, you get a variety of interesting ideas and concepts. Expect discussions on nanobots, interstellar travel and communication, with a drip-feed of information as the mystery is slowly revealed. This is the first part of the trilogy and there is no real conclusion to the work, so you’ll have to explore the other two parts to find the answers to the three-body problem!

Narrated by: Bruno Roubicek – Length: 14 hrs and 37 mins

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