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...
Joe Haldeman was born in Oklahoma in 1943 and studied physics and astronomy before serving as a combat engineer in Vietnam, where he was severely wounded and won a Purple Heart. The Forever War was his first SF novel and it won both the Hugo and Nebula awards, a feat which The Forever Peace repeated. He is also the author of, among others, Mindbridge, All My Sins Remembered, Worlds, Worlds Apart and Worlds Enough and Time.