Three Body Problem
Jane Hill, Associate Professor of Engineering, Allen House Residential Professor

This is a science fiction book that catapults you into another way of thinking, not unlike reading some of Ray Bradbury for the first time or Orson Scott Card’s Enders series. Cixin’s ideas are refreshing and expertly conveyed. Cixin’s book – a collection of three linked novellas - was translated by Ken Liu and published in 2014, and won the 2015 Hugo Award for Best Novel. It starts with the novella Trisolaris, named for a world with three suns that seems like ours, but which is not at all like ours due to the chaotic nature of the physics created by its three suns. The evolution of the people on the plant parallel Earth’s history, but the juxtaposition with our way of life is shocking, as is their decision to evolve in a way that could impact humans on Earth. First Contacts is told to us through the cultural revolution up through to today. The phenomenon that drives a secret base crashes into generations, resulting in a saga that makes for a clash of core morals. The Present is the culmination of that clash of philosophies developed in First Contacts and you won’t know what to expect there, either.