By Cixin Liu
Translated by Joel Martinsen
Book Jacket/Cover by Stephan Martiniere
518 pages printed paperback
ISBN 978-0-7653-8669-4
Published by Tor Books Publishing

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THE DARK FOREST” is the second book of the trilogy The Remembrance of Earth’s Past by Cixin Liu.

It took much longer than I expected but, I finally finished reading the book. There is some excitement missing with this book when compared to “The Three-Body Problem”, which means more effort into reading to the end, but overall I think it is a good follow-up.

Like the first book, “THE THREE-BODY PROBLEM“, starts off with a list of characters you will encounter throughout the book. This included their names and their position or title.

The story begins with one of the antagonists, Luo Ji, having a chance encounter with Dr. Ye, one of the main characters for the first book. During this chance meeting, Dr. Ye gives Luo Ji a piece of career advice that will have a profound impact on the way the book ends. And it is not what I had expected.

“THE DARK FOREST” covers nearly 200 years of Earth’s history, from the time Luo Ji first met Dr. Ye, to the time the Trisolarans first made physical contact with humans. I don’t mean Actual Trisolarans, more like probes and machines encountering humans for the first time.

During the 200 years, the people of Earth made preparations for the coming war. Advanced spaceships and weapons systems were developed, built, and deployed around the solar system. Fusion engines powered these spaceships and were manned by thousands of people. Space travel had become a reality.

On Earth itself, preparations were made. Most of the world’s population moved underground for protection. Fusion power provided almost unlimited power to light up and power this underground world.

All this progress was achieved despite the block on new scientific discoveries the Trisolarans placed on humans. 

This brought confidence to the people of Earth in their ability to win the war with the Trisolarans. The people were mostly happy and content, secure in the belief that the Trisolaran fleet, when it arrived, would need to come to a negotiated peace rather than face imminent defeat.

But can this peace last? The first contact around the orbit of Jupiter will answer this. Keeping plans to win the war against such an advanced civilization was one of the biggest challenges Earth’s defense had to overcome. And the solution will bring the involvement of a hesitant Luo Ji.

I think the book is well thought out and well written. The unexpected turn of events for both the people of Earth and the Trisolarans will make you wonder what the eventual ending of the Trilogy is. 

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