Bowl of Heaven

Gregory Benford and Larry Niven

Tor Science Fiction

In Bowl of Heaven, the first collaboration by science fiction masters Larry Niven (Ringworld) and Gregory Benford (Timescape), the limits of wonder are redrawn once again as a human expedition to another star system is jeopardized by an encounter with an astonishingly immense artifact in interstellar space: a bowlshaped structure half-englobing a star, with a habitable area equivalent to many millions of Earths…and it’s on a direct path heading for the same system as the human ship.


A landing party is sent to investigate the Bowl, but when the explorers are separated—one group captured by the gigantic structure’s alien inhabitants, the other pursued across its strange and dangerous landscape—the mystery of the Bowl’s origins and purpose propel the human voyagers toward discoveries that will transform their understanding of their place in the universe.


Read an Excerpt

Life persists.
He recalled those words, his nervous mantra recited as the soft sleep came closing its grip with chilly fingers—
—and so he knew he was alive. Awake again. Up from the chill-sleep of many decades.
He was cold. His memory was blurred, but it told him he was on an odyssey no biologist had ever ventured on before, a grand epic. He was going to the stars, yes, and they had given him the stinky sulfur gas, yes, the first creeping chill … and that was … it.
But beyond that flash of memory, all he could think of was


Praise for Bowl of Heaven

Praise for Larry Niven:

“Niven lifts the reader far from the conventional world—and does it with a dash.”

—Los Angeles Times


“The premier hard-SF writer of the day.”

—The Baltimore Sun



Praise for Gregory Benford:


“Benford is one of our best.”

—Greg Bear, bestselling and award-winning author of Eon


“What sets Benford apart from most of the high-tech literary herd is his gift for characterization and language, his refusal to let gadgets overwhelm the people in his stories.... Benford never lets his characters become the animated cardboard cutouts that afflict too many hard science fiction stories.”

—San Francisco Chronicle

Reviews from Goodreads



  • Gregory Benford and Larry Niven

  • GREGORY BENFORD is professor of physics at the University of California, Irvine, and lives in Irvine. Benford is a winner of the United Nations Medal for Literature, and the Nebula Award for his classic novel Timescape.


    LARRY NIVEN is the multiple Hugo and Nebula Award–winning author of the Ringworld series, along with many other science fiction masterpieces. His Beowulf’s Children, coauthored with Jerry Pournelle and Steven Barnes, was a New York Times bestseller. He lives in Chatsworth, California.

  • Gregory Benford
  • Larry Niven Zachary W. Green


Available Formats and Book Details

Bowl of Heaven

Gregory Benford and Larry Niven



Tor Science Fiction