I am trying to locate a book from the 1970s/80s that I started but never finished when I was a kid. All I can remember is that it was set in a dystopian world where the cities were built miles and miles above the planet's surface and that there were sophisticated atmospheric controls used in the cities' highest levels to allow residents to breathe normally. The protagonist was possibly an adolescent female and maybe a thief? I've been racking my brain on this for ages and appreciate any help offered.


1 Answer 1


It could be you're confusing Zelda with a book or fell asleep during a floating city episode of Star Trek.

Or from the Wikipedia page on "Floating cities in science fiction":

The novel Orion Shall Rise by Poul Anderson features an aerostat city called Skyholm, located above present-day France.

In the novel The Ringworld Engineers, Louis Wu seeks a way to save the Ringworld by bartering for information in the library of a floating city.

Airhaven is a floating city in the Mortal Engines Quartet, that, through attaching gas bags, lifted itself into the air to avoid cities trying to eat it according to Municipal Darwinism.

There are numerous floating habitats on the Venus-like planet Chilo in Tobias S. Buckell's novel Sly Mongoose. Buckell credits Geoffrey A. Landis with providing the background information on the floating cities.

Saga of Seven Suns by Kevin J. Anderson has giant, manned, gas mining platforms, that mine the hydrogen necessary to, among other things, distill into ekti, a vital stardrive fuel.

Charles Stross's novel Saturn's Children begins in a floating city on Venus.

In Hannu Rajaniemi's novel The Quantum Thief, the Mars colony began as a slave-labor latifundia. After war developed, all entities began taking turns being the beings who kept the city rolling (and deflecting the permanent attack vectors that had been created during the war). The city kept rolling, with everyone's help.

The Cities in Flight series by James Blish propose a universe in which cities cast adrift from the Earth, powered by a fictional spindizzy drive.

  • Thanks. I'm pretty sure that the cities weren't floating but were different levels of a continguous structure.
    – Zephyr333
    Commented Apr 30, 2015 at 15:50

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