The third exploration mission to Mars vanishes in 2029 without a trace. Two decades later, the success of human settlement of Mars and the life of a young girl hinge on the secret of what happened to the Ares III mission…
In 2051, Mars is a growing outpost of humanity, and 14-year-old settler Amber Jacobsen is a minor interplanetary celebrity – ‘the First Kid on Mars’. Pioneering Mars is hard, unglamorous work, though, and Amber secretly wishes she were just an ordinary girl living on Earth.
When her family’s homestead is destroyed in an apparent accident, the Jacobsens relocate to an independent settlement located on the northern fringes of Noctis Labyrinthus, a vast and largely unexplored canyonland. Their new home promises new opportunities, and Amber looks forward to being just another member of the community. Instead, the other settlers dismiss her as a burdensome child and refuse to accept her as the responsible young adult she has become.
In order to prove the value of her unique knowledge and perspective, Amber vows to uncover the fate of the Ares III mission, whose loss had largely been forgotten in the rush of the Martian settlement boom. But this seemingly harmless challenge thrusts her into a deadly conflict: those who know the truth will kill to keep it hidden, while those who destroyed her family’s homestead would use the secret to secure their dominance over all of Mars.
In solving the mystery, Amber could destroy everything the Martian settlers have worked to create.
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