orithyia's review

Go to review page

adventurous challenging reflective medium-paced

4.0

cameroncl's review

Go to review page

adventurous challenging mysterious reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? N/A
  • Strong character development? N/A
  • Loveable characters? N/A
  • Diverse cast of characters? N/A
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? N/A

3.75

Ken Liu's second collection of translated Chinese scifi short stories. Nothing in this set quite hits the heights of "Folding Beijing" in the previous anthology ("Invisible Planets") but the works here are *way* more varied in form, structure, and theme. This is especially true of stories in the back half of the set - "The First Emperor's Games", "Coming of the Light", and "A History of Future Illnesses" Capped off with three essays on the history of Chinese scifi as both a Fandom and as a subcategory of literary studies.

marmarta's review

Go to review page

challenging inspiring mysterious reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? N/A

5.0

This is an amazing introduction to a wide array of mind-bending Chinese SF. Anyone interested in SF, Chinese literature or just an thought-provoking read should read it.

kellyvandermeulen's review against another edition

Go to review page

3.0

There are some stories that I barely followed, some mediocre, and a few that I really really enjoyed. Together with the essays at the end a wonderful compilation.

pagesforages's review against another edition

Go to review page

4.0

3.5
I liked most of the stories but the first two essays seemed to just be lists of authors and stories. Quite pointless.

deannamorley22's review against another edition

Go to review page

4.0

These short stories are what I'd call 'literary' sci-fi. They have a lot of relevance to the real world, so I think that even people who aren't fans of epic sci-fi stories like Star Wars would enjoy them.
I liked some stories more than others, but the ones that stood out were very clever. My favourites included 'What has passed shall in kinder light appear', 'Moonlight', and 'Goodnight, melancholy'.

dilemma13's review

Go to review page

reflective

4.0

yapxinyi's review against another edition

Go to review page

5.0

Really, really good. Original, dynamic and bursting with potential. I've always enjoyed [a:Ken Liu|2917920|Ken Liu|https://images.gr-assets.com/authors/1400610835p2/2917920.jpg]'s works - [b:The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories|24885533|The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories|Ken Liu|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1511290092i/24885533._SY75_.jpg|44534169] mostly - and this did not disappoint.

My favourite story would be What Has Passed Shall in Kinder Light Appear by Baoshu. It was longer than most of the stories in it, with a few mini-chapters, but it was absolutely lovely. The way Baoshu incorporated historical events you thought you knew (I didn't even know my history well enough to realise it was events going backwards /cough/) and you really see how humanity doesn't learn from history. :'(

I loved that Ken Liu thought of adding essays on Chinese science fiction (SF) in it too! I kinda knew that the Chinese government stifled SF and banned the time-travelling genre on Chinese television shows and broadcast after 步步惊心 (Scarlet Heart), but I didn't know that SF literature was so popular - well, gaining in traction, in any case. I bought Liu Cixin's [b:The Three-Body Problem|20518872|The Three-Body Problem (Remembrance of Earth’s Past #1)|Liu Cixin|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1415428227i/20518872._SY75_.jpg|25696480] right away after reading the first SF essay (I skipped right to the end at the bookstore while browsing HAHA) and so far, so good! Promising start.

Definitely worth a dip into even if you're sceptical - some stories are a bit science-y but most explore human relationships. And a little bit of philosophy. ;) You rarely get away from SF without some sort of thinking about the future of humanity!

littlewishling's review against another edition

Go to review page

challenging emotional reflective fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? N/A
  • Loveable characters? N/A
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? N/A

3.75

A really good introduction to Chinese science fiction although I think I might have enjoyed some of the stories more if I had a better understanding of Chinese history. There’s a broad enough range of stories that I can confidently say any reader will find one they enjoy.  

Expand filter menu Content Warnings

eyelit's review against another edition

Go to review page

adventurous challenging mysterious medium-paced

3.75