In Schild’s Ladder, humanity has transcended both death and Earth, and discovered its home world is nearly unique as a cradle of life. As it spreads throughout the galaxy, humanity enjoys an almost utopian existence?—?until a scientist accidentally creates an impenetrable, steadily expanding vacuum that devours star systems and threatens the entire universe with destruction.
Tchicaya is a Yielder, member of the faction that believes this “novo-vacuum” deserves study. The opposing Preservationists?—?among them Mariama, his first love?—?seek to save worlds and destroy the novo-vacuum. Discord heats to terrorist violence; then enmities and alliances are turned upside-down by a discovery that may mean the novo-vacuum is, instead, a new and very different universe?—?and one which may contain life.