Dirt is for losers.
"DOWN TO DIRT is YA hard science fiction with an attitude, full of technical details as engaging as the characters. I was immediately drawn into the story." ~ Kevin J. Anderson, New York Times bestselling author of ETERNITY'S MIND
It's 2021, and humanity has been in space for half a century. Giant space stations are hubs of scientific and industrial research, colonies are spreading across the moon and Mars, and sixteen-year-old Mara Duval, born and raised on Tombaugh Station, is training to be part of humanity's first mission to the moons of Jupiter.
Life is full of possibilities—opportunities denied those deemed unfit for life in space. The unintelligent, the diseased, the mentally unstable, and the criminal—all who have been rejected by the Space Service—are condemned to live their lives on dirt, a planet everyone knows but no one mentions. Every spacer has relatives on dirt, family members who failed to qualify for space. Some are remembered, some are forgotten; but all are left behind.
To Mara's horror, her parents have mandated she understand her past before she can pursue her future. If she wants to follow her dream to Jupiter, she must leave the safety of space and get to know her uncle, aunt, and cousin confined to dirt. Given no choice, she submits to medical procedures and intense physical training—bracing herself to survive weeks of exile amid violence, disease, and dangers she can only imagine.
But nothing could prepare Mara for what she discovers when she goes down to dirt.
EVOLVED PUBLISHING PRESENTS the first book in this critically acclaimed, timely, young adult science fiction adventure that's sure to keep you riveted.
Books by Kevin Killiany:
- "Down to Dirt" (Book 1)
- "Life on Dirt" (Book 2)
- "Rise from Dirt" (Book 3)
- "For the Stars" (Book 4) [Coming Fall 2019]
More Great Sci-Fi from Evolved Publishing:
- "Star City" Series by Edwin Peng
- "Noah Zarc" Series by D. Robert Pease
- "Panhelion Chronicles" Series by Marlin Desault
- "Uploaded" Series by James W. Hughes
- "Whitewashed" Series by Adelaide Thorne
- Two Moons of Sera by P.K. Tyler
- The Silver Sphere by Michael Dadich
About the Author
EDITOR: Some say I was born with a red pen in my hand, so it's no surprise that my penchant for words and stories ultimately led to a career in writing and editing. My literary tastes vary, but I largely gravitate toward genre fiction. I'll read anything sci-fi, fantasy, horror, western, and so forth. Some of my favorite contemporary authors are Dan Simmons, Chuck Wendig, David Brin, George R. R. Martin, and John Scalzi.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
The Space Service runs everything relating to outer space, from shuttles to colonizing Mars and such. Those that live on the Tombaugh Space Station are the elite. They are strong, have no illnesses mentally or physically, and are essentially perfect. Those that are born with any problems are deemed unfit for space and sent to live on Earth (Dirt). Mara was born on Tombaugh and looks down her nose at those on Dirt. Until her parents decide to send her down to Dirt for her break. Mara is throwing a fit and NOT happy about this development. She stays at her uncle, aunt, and cousin’s place. But life on Dirt is completely different from life on Tombaugh. This story rotates narration between Mara, her cousin Beth, and Beth’s friend Jael. Each had their own way of looking at this world and conveys their opinions beautifully. I admit that I was not too impressed by Mara when we first meet her throwing a fit about vaccinations and how being sent to Dirt was going to ruin everything for her and how it was child abuse. But I love how all three come together to fight prejudice, typical teenage issues, and better Dirt. This is a great story for teens and adults alike. It is well written and was so easy to get into. I think that most people that read it will enjoy it and suggest everyone checking it out. I received a complimentary copy of this book. I voluntarily chose to read and post an honest review.
In a fun way, this book is about culture clash. We read entries in the journals of three very different teenage girls. From the first few words, there is a lot of understated humor. For example, “child abuse” very quickly turns out to be inoculations, because a girl born on space station is made to visit relatives on Earth. The reality this story is set in has a different history. The USA has monopoly in space. Its colonies there were established at a time of out and out racial discrimination. While that has eased down in the “dirt,” the Space Agency is thoroughly racist, and brainwashes its children accordingly. The other two girls are “twins” within their hearts, although one is a freckled redhead, the other “carob color.” The theme is how the visitor from space learns the truth about “dirt,” and about people different from herself. This is a story most youngsters will enjoy, and perhaps they won’t even notice that they are taught lessons. The only thing I object to is that the baddie is approximately from my part of the world, but I won’t do a spoiler by explaining.
Reviewed by Lex Allen for Readers' Favorite In Kevin Killiany’s sci-fi novel, Down to Dirt, Mom and Dad have decreed that daughter Mara, born in space, must spend her vacation with relatives on Dirt (that would be the future planet Earth). Mara, her cousin Beth, and best friend Jael tell the story through their individual diary entries. As an African-American girl, Jael is among the lowest of the low denizens on Dirt. In this future world, blacks suffer indignities beyond what people of this race suffered in years past. Still, she’s Beth’s best friend and Mr. Killiany capitalizes on the positive and negative themes such a friendship would create. Mara, with multiple prejudices concerning Dirt, tries to fit into her new environment and Killiany adeptly weaves each of these strands together with a critical view on how our world could look in the future. As Mara works through issues concerning a new school, developing a relationship with Beth and Jael, along with the typical boy/girl ups and downs, she also has to learn to handle weather changes and the ever present gravity. The three teenage girls soon develop a bond and work together to make their lives and the lives of the citizens of Dirt better. There are wordsmiths who craft amazingly accurate sentences that read like a delicious chocolate mousse on the tongue and then, there is Kevin Killiany. There are great storytellers who succeed despite their reversal of the “show, don’t tell” rule and then again, there is Kevin Killiany. I generally have a hard time reading stories where events are more told than shown, but Down to Dirt was such an entertaining and effortless read, that I am pleased to admit I’ve seldom read a novel this close to perfection. Everything you could want in a YA, coming of age, sci-fi, dystopian world drama is here, put together for your reading pleasure by a talented and masterful writer. Do yourself a favor and read Down to Dirt by Kevin Killiany.
I love this book! The characters instantly draw you in. I cannot wait for the rest of the series to see how the story unfolds!