A close-up photo of the sun.

What I’m Reading: Sun of Suns

A rocket-powered bike flies past an immense spinning city in the cover art for Sun of Suns.
Cover art for Sun of Suns by Karl Schroeder

Sun of Suns takes place in an immense habitable Dyson sphere (or something like a Dyson sphere) inclosing the star Virga. A freefall civilization — complete with barrel-like towns spun to produce gravity — has spread throughout the enclosed habitat. The book tells the story of Hayden Griffin, a young man seeking revenge against the nation of Slipstream for its war against his homeland (and the death of his mother) when he was a child. The environment is reminicent of Larry Niven’s Integral Trees novel, which took place in a similar microgravity environment (though in that case it was a stable gas torus around a star, rather than an enclosed sphere.

Sun of Suns’ civilization is more advanced than that of Niven’s, with small fusion suns tended by small nation-states and rocket-powered wood-and-steel ships capable of traveling the areas of “winter” between the suns. It’s a good read, full of shifting loyalties and strange-but-cool human habitats.