Books by Liu Cixin
The Three-Body Problem
by Liu Cixin
· published 2006 · read 2018-08-10
★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
I came into the first volume of Liu Cixin's Remembrance of Earth's Past with high expectations, as there was somewhat of a hype surrounding the book. It's nearly as good as (and too me, evocative of) Subjective Cosmology by Greg Egan. It's very nice physics (and physicists) scifi. The characters were irritatingly flat a lot of the time (a common hard scifi illness), and often felt over the top to me. The beginning of the book was fairly slow, and compared to that, the ending felt sudden (not rushed, mind, only sudden), and I missed some information and worldbuilding there. (I can't be more specific without heavy spoilers, sorry.) I appreciated the somber ending (although the very final scene was a bit over the top for me). The translation was pretty good. There remained occasional phrases that sounded weird/unidiomatic, but it happens, especially if there's so much culture to translate.
The Dark Forest
by Liu Cixin
· published 2008 · read 2018-09-24
★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆
I felt both bored and annoyed at The Dark Forest (sequel to Liu Cixin's The Three Body Problem). The plot was convoluted and wandering, but not all that bad – but the people in it continued to be cardboard cutouts of one motivation, and optionally one emotion or one habit, if you were lucky. Also, the vanishingly few female characters had even less of a personality (and were mostly partners-of-somebody with little page time and even less impact). One female character was literally introduced directly as the protagonist's fantasy and then fridged to provide motivation for him.