Technically not a new book, since it's a collection of three interrelated stories set in Westeros that had previously appeared as novellas, in other bTechnically not a new book, since it's a collection of three interrelated stories set in Westeros that had previously appeared as novellas, in other books, and as part of graphic novels. They're finally put together as one whole piece!
The artwork is fantastic, and the stories really are some of George R.R. Martin’s best. Think of it as a good way to bridge that long wait until Game of Thrones Season 6 and The Winds of Winter in 2016. ...more
Incredible and amazing book. It's truly beautiful and has some really interesting ideas and concepts there. So yes, it qualifies as a HARD science ficIncredible and amazing book. It's truly beautiful and has some really interesting ideas and concepts there. So yes, it qualifies as a HARD science fiction work. I'll be checking out the sequels in the trilogy. The novel is heavily influenced by science fiction legend Arthur C. Clarke, Liu's novels place more on technical and scientific explanations than on characters or plot. Its technical depictions can make the books seem cold and detached, but they still depict a grand imagination and draw readers into a different world. One good thing about the novel is its crafty crescendo in the story: it starts with a few individuals, like in a close-up. Slowly, the plot draws more and more people in. The intrigue never stops getting bigger till it turns truly epic.
FYI - The three-body problem refers to the impossibility to predict the motion of three bodies in space, based on their respective gravitational attraction. To put it simply, if three celestial bodies are revolving around each other in a system, we can't predict their trajectory at any point in time because it's close to random. But The Three-Body Problem is not a dry speculation about physics: it's also a reflection about the consequence of China's cultural revolution (the cultural revolution is, in a nutshell, the violent repression and social purge that followed the establishment of the first communist government in China).
In short words, it's NOT a standard alien invasion story where the only thing to set it apart from so many others is that it happens to take place in China. It's much more than this. ...more
It's a compelling and well researched collection of stories of lawyers gone bad. It made for a very interesting reading. Sometimes, truth is a great dIt's a compelling and well researched collection of stories of lawyers gone bad. It made for a very interesting reading. Sometimes, truth is a great deal stranger than fiction. It can be depressing too. ...more
So the narrator is a dog here. It's also about racing (NASCAR and FORMULA 1!). Yet it's quite simple but 'deep. The narrator used racing as a metaphorSo the narrator is a dog here. It's also about racing (NASCAR and FORMULA 1!). Yet it's quite simple but 'deep. The narrator used racing as a metaphor for racing. I have to say the ending is a most satisfying one. I admits I shed one or two tears ...more
Think of this novel as a "George R. R. Martin-style" story set during a fantasy ancient/medieval China. Fast. Sharp. Beautiful at points, brutal at otThink of this novel as a "George R. R. Martin-style" story set during a fantasy ancient/medieval China. Fast. Sharp. Beautiful at points, brutal at others
Ken Liu’s debut possess an epic grandeur, intelligence and dignity. I found it addicting, sharp, fast and beautiful at one point, yet brutal at another point. It’s an epic and ambitious fantasy-with-not-much-magic story that feels more like reading a historical textbook at some points.
The world and culture of this book are very much modeled on the ancient dynastic Chinese societies: autocratic government with an emperor at the top and nobles below, heavy emphasis on filial duty, academies of learning that revere ancient teachers of proper governing and moral principles, the importance of seating positions in social interactions. A criminally underused cultural influence that I always find fascinating to explore. Liu does a wonderful job exploring the various nooks and crannies of the world.
The tax-collection was interesting. Even the evolution of leadership was interesting! And I enjoyed the development of characters too! The tragic conclusion was deftly handled. Read it if you like epic, world-sweeping novels. Or if you want to know about how the seeds of tragedy are rooted in heroism. The writing is excellent, and some of the scenes are beautiful, heartbreaking, or thought-provoking. It struggles with pace, being uneven and slow in places, however that's one drawback.
I very much agree with many of the observations and conclusions that are brought to the forefront through the narrative. They include philosophical notes on war and the nature of conflict, human relationships, gender roles, how expectations can twist people, etc.
To summarizes it up: If you are particularly interested in reading a fantasy that has a non-western flavor, then you should definitely pick up this book. And, if you are a fan of Mr. Liu’s previous work, it’s a no brainer. ...more
Review time: Seveneves is a long book but it certainly take us on one long and amazing ride. For the first 500+ pages, the book is a mixture of technoReview time: Seveneves is a long book but it certainly take us on one long and amazing ride. For the first 500+ pages, the book is a mixture of techno-thriller apocalyptic/post-apocalyptic science fiction. Neil Stephenson has a knack for thinking big while not ignoring the detail work. The novel often get bogged in technological and genetic details.
Stephenson is good at giving the hard sci-fi lovers exactly what they want: exquisitely researched, cogently fictionalized detail of space-flight, orbital physics, and planetary geology while, at the same time, providing with fans of soft, social science-fiction with a nuanced glimpse into the personal, socio-political and even genetic and epigenetic ramifications of an apocalypse. Stephenson shows off his politics (Libertarian/entrepreneur) by taking on interesting social and political themes, from the uses, abuses and limits of power to the consequences of directed genetic manipulation.
Aka Neil deGrasse Tyson and Elon Musk save the human race! It's quite a depressing but optimistic magnum opus from Neil Stephenson. ...more