Hanville Svetz was born into a future to match the sorriest predictions of Greenpeace. Most of Earth's original life forms are extinct. It had been Svetz's job to go back in time and retrieve them but he's been transferred. He now must figure out why the Martian canals have gone dry and what that means for Earth's future, because Mars was inhabited. When Svetz learns how the sapient Martian species was wiped out, he realizes that Earth could soon fall victim to a similar fate. Together with his dog, Wrona, a visitor from the distant past, and Miya, an astronaut with her own complex history, Svetz must unravel a puzzle that will tax not just his rational mind, but the very limits of his imagination.