By: edited by Ken Liu
Translator: Ken Liu; Carmen Yiling Yan
Release Date: February 19, 2019
Publisher: Tor Books
Series: Chinese Science Fiction in Translation #2
Following 2016’s Invisible Planets: Contemporary Chinese Science Fiction in Translation Ken Liu has translated and compiled a second volume titled Broken Stars: Contemporary Chinese Science Fiction in Translation. Short stories, novellas, and essays comprise the volume, all of them translated from the original Chinese into English. Author and translator of such books as Cixin Liu’s The Three-Body Problem translates each story beautifully. Also translating this volume is Carmen Yiling Yan.
The majority of the volume is made up of short stories. Two much longer works, which are more or less novella length, are also included. The end of the book has several essays on Chinese science fiction. Before each of these is a one-to-two page write up on the author and their works.
Unlike the first volume in this series, many of the stories within Broken Stars bridge the gap between science fiction and fantasy. Despite being clearly set in futuristic or science fictional worlds, the otherworldly and unexplainable can be found within the pages. These stories in particular I enjoyed. I tend to gravitate towards stories that straddle genre lines, so this wasn’t very surprising.
As with all anthologies, I found some stories more enjoyable than others. However, I am eternally grateful to Ken Liu for translating Chinese science fiction which we were sorely missing before the push for translation of these works these last few years.
Broken Stars: Contemporary Chinese Science Fiction in Translation is an anthology fans of science fiction, short fiction, and translated works will all love. I highly giving not only this volume, but the prior volume within this series a read.
If you are interested in my thoughts on the first volume within this series see below:
Invisible Planets: Contemporary Science Fiction in Translation edited by Ken Lui