The Collapsium by Wil McCarthy
The CollapsiumBruno de Towaji was the royal consort of Her Majesty Tamra Lutui, the Queendom of Sol. He is also the inventor of collapsium and the richest man in the kingdom. Humans have moved to a monarchy system similar to what is now in England. Queen Tamra is a figurehead so everyone has someone to honor – and blame. Bruno and she have split and he now lives on his own small planet where he can do more experiments with collapsium without endangering anyone else.
Marlon Sykes is Bruno’s rival for Tamra and for scientific discoveries. Due to his wellstone invention, people now travel by a faxing technology and are practically immortal. They can make copies of themselves so they can be in two places at once. So Marlon can be building the new Ring Callapsiter around the sun for faster communication as well as in his home laboratory working on his experiments. Bruno has not bothered to keep copies of himself.
Bruno is called back to Earth when the Ring Collapsiter is unexpectedly sinking into the sun instead of holding its circle shape. Marlon and his assistant have been going round and round trying to solve the problem. Tamra finally calls Bruno back because the core of the Ring Collapsiter is collapsium.
It’s not until after Bruno has found answers to the current problems that he finally realizes that someone is attacking the Ring Collapsiter. Someone is trying to destroy it and many important humans along with it. Bruno finds himself as one of the targets of the murderer.
The Collapsium is an interesting novel based in hard science. The characters never quite come to life but the science is made to sound believable. It’s beyond my comprehension, but that doesn’t make it less believable. McCarthy has set up a well done novel with interesting action. Hard science fiction fans will enjoy this novel.