First I should mention that Bova teaches Science Fiction at Harvard not astrophysics... so anyway, the idea first purveyed by Peter Glaser in 1968, is to establish an array of Solar Power Satellites (SPS) in Space that would collect energy from the sun. The advantage to SPSs is that they have 100% exposure to the sun as opposed to earth bound collectors that only work during the daylight hours. Once that energy is collected it is then beamed to collecting stations on earth via Microwaves.
According to Bova just one of these satellites would be capable of continually sending 5-10 gigawatts of energy... enough energy to power all of California two times over! So as not to fry birds flying by the beams would have to be spread over a wide area, so collection points would also be rather large. The ideal places for such facilities would be in large, dry unpopulated areas like the Mojave desert, or ironically the Middle East.
Yes, this sounds like one of Bova's science fiction stories, however, it should be noted that many of his "fiction" writings have come to be reality including the Space Race of the 1960s, the discovery of organic chemicals in space, virtual reality, human cloning, the Strategic Defense Initiative (Star Wars), the advent of international peacekeeping forces, the discovery of ice on the Moon, and electronic book publishing.
According to Bova the technology for the SPS energy systems exists today, the only hurdle is the astronomical up front costs to implement it. But as with anything, initially it costs an arm and a leg, but as technology improves and materials get cheaper you may see this idea find it's way off of the Sci Fi shelf and into the textbooks.