It’s 2021, and humanity has been in space for half a century. Cities dot Luna, colonies are spreading across Mars, and ships are being built to explore deep space. Sixteen-year-old Mara Duval, born and raised on Tombaugh Space Station, is training to be part of humanity’s first mission to the moons of Jupiter. Life in space is full of opportunities.
But not for everyone. Not for those condemned to live their lives on dirt—a place everyone knows but no one mentions. Dirt is for the people deemed unfit for life in space—the unintelligent, the diseased, the mentally ill, the emotionally unstable, the sociopaths, and the criminals.

Every family has members who are condemned to life on dirt, and Mara’s is no different. But where every other family moves on and leaves behind relatives who have failed, her parents are determined Mara should get to know hers—to understand her past before going off to her future in deep space. For Mara there’s no escape. Despite the dangers and diseases, her parents are forcing her to go down to dirt.


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