Young Carmen Dula and her family are embarking on the adventure of a lifetime - they are going to Mars. But Carmen isn't so sure she wants to. After training for a year and preparing to leave on the six-month journey, she finds that the initial excitement has given way to both trepidation and frustration.
Once there, however, Carmen realizes that things are not so different from Earth. There are chores, lessons, and oppressive authority figures. All of that leads her to venture out into the bleak Mars landscape alone, where an accident takes her to the edge of death - and she is saved by an angel. An angel with too many arms and legs, a head that looks like a potato gone bad - and a message for the newly arrived inhabitants of Mars:
We were here first...