Head of Zeus Release Award-winning SF Author Cixin Liu’s Stories As Graphic Novels

by Benjamin Williams
12th August, 2021
3 minutes

London-based publisher Head of Zeus, under its Ad Astra imprint, has released the first four English language graphic novel adaptations of award-winning Chinese SF author’s Cixin Liu novels, including The Wandering Earth, with art by Stefano Raffaele, and The Village Teacher, with art by Zhang Xiaoyu.

Cixin Lui is China's #1 SF writer and is the author of Hugo Award winning The Three-Body Problem, which sadly is not part of the four releases - but with any luck, the trilogy will be coming soon.

Head of Zeus have been kind enough to send me a copy of The Wandering Earth so will have a review for that up soon. In the meantime, here's some information about the four books released so far including the absolutely stunning covers. Every cover is incredible.

Cixin Liu's The Wandering Earth: A Graphic Novel
Cixin Liu, illustrated by Stefano Raffaele

The Wandering Earth graphic novel

The Sun is dying. Helium will soon permeate its core, triggering a violent explosion, and its burning-hot diameter will increase until it has consumed everything that stands in its way.

As long as we remain in its path, humanity stands no chance.

Interstellar emigration is the only way out. Reaching a consensus on a destination has been easy: the only viable target is Proxima Centauri. It is the star closest to our own, a mere 4.3 light-years away.

How to reach our new solar system is more difficult. Spaceships stand no chance in open space, and the nearest inhabitable planet lies hundreds of thousands of years away. If humanity leaves Earth behind, our continued existence is impossible. The only way to survive is to find a way to propel Earth out of its orbit. But how?

Cixin Liu's Sea of Dreams: A Graphic Novel
Cixin Liu, illustrated by JOK

Sea of Dreams graphic novel

It was the Ice and Snow Arts Festival that lured the low-temperature artist to Earth. Drawn by the beauty and technical skill of the sculptures displayed, the extraterrestrial visitor longed to collaborate and share its own art.

But while humans learnt to craft ice into exquisite ephemera, the low-temperature artist's civilisation mastered the manipulation of whole worlds to create artworks – drawing on the seas and ice caps, and cooling their temperature to beautiful effect.

Faced with the inevitable devastation and heat death of their planet, humankind must use their final breaths to fight for existence. But the artist will only speak to one human: Yan Dong, the ice sculptor whose beautiful work first drew its eye.

Cixin Liu's The Village Teacher: A Graphic Novel
Cixin Liu, illustrated by Zhang Xiaoyu

The Village Teacher graphic novel

In the depths of mountains shrouded with ignorance and superstition, one man has dedicated his life to igniting a passion for maths and science in the hearts of the peasant children around him. Now his life is coming to its end, he draws his students around him so he can impart knowledge on them to his final breath.

All the while, in a far corner of outer space, fifty thousand light-years away, an interstellar war that has waged for thousands of years is coming to an end. The victor plans to perform the full-scale extermination of any low-intelligence lifeforms that remain in what is now his solar system.

In order to gauge the intelligence of a planet, the victor devises a test – posed to a group of lifeforms selected at random by a computer – of science and mathematics. On a green-and-blue planet nestled in a spiral arm of the Milky Way, the computer's selection falls to a group of children, in the depths of mountains shrouded with ignorance and superstition...

Cixin Liu's Yuanyuan's Bubbles: A Graphic Novel
Cixin Liu, illustrated by Steven Dupré

Yuanyuan's Bubbles graphic novel

Yuanyuan was five months old when she saw bubbles for the first time. In that moment, her eyes lit up with a radiance that outshone the sun and stars, and she felt she truly saw the world for the first time. From that day on, her life's one dream was to blow the biggest bubbles possible.

Yuanyuan's father doesn't approve of her dream. He fears his daughter's obsession is childish and too fleeting for his daughter, and longs for her to turn her intelligence to a calling that might help people. Their city is dying, but Yuanyuan focuses solely on blowing bigger and bigger bubbles.

But when Yuanyuan learns to create a bubble the size of a city – greater even – it may be that her obsession isn't so unhelpful after all.

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