It is impossible to resist Alex’s earnest and relentless desire to understand, his charming sense of humor, and his unbridled commitment to those he loves. In writing Alex’s character, Cheng could so easily have crossed over into the realm of either the saccharine or the obnoxious, but he avoids both deftly, and ultimately, it is Alex’s unique, wise, and hilarious voice that has stayed with me. This is appropriate since the book is written as a series of voice recordings on Alex’s golden iPod, a move which allows Cheng to stay closely within Alex’s perspective most of the time, but also introduces us to the perspective of Alex’s fellow-voyagers, each of whom is, in their own way, also pursuing truth and finding family.
The sign of a good novel is that when you finish it, you realize you are both more interested in the world and emotionally richer than you were before you started it. The sign of a great novel is that you feel this way from page one.
See You in the Cosmos is a great novel.