This second volume in David Brin's new Uplift trilogy is an epic tale that artfully combines dozens of unique characters and their individual stories. The planet Jijo, which has been settled by six separate races despite a decree that it remain barren for a million years, is about to change. The exploration ship Streaker, on the run since discovering the secrets of a two-billion-year-old derelict fleet, has arrived with virtually the entire universe in pursuit. Overnight the peaceful, technologically backwards Jijoan society erupts into civil war, creating a chaotic tapestry of grief, sorrow, joy, love and, ultimately, hope.
For 2000 years, Jijo's six exiled races have lived together. Their greatest wish: to be left alone. Their greatest fear: an inevitable Judgement Day, when godlike Galactic authorities will punish their illegal colony. Now they have been found and starships darken their skies.