This collection puts together 20 of the best science fiction stories about Mars published over the past two decades by top-notch authors of the genre. An improbable group of astronauts are slingshot to Mars in cheap one-person, one-way jalopies in "Terminal," by Lavie Tidhar. In "The Cascade," by Sean McMullen, an affair between a shy robotics postdoc and an adventurous young woman change the destiny of the first landing on Mars. A penal colony on Mars violently clashes with a science base in "Falling onto Mars," a Hugo Award winning story by Geoffrey A. Landis. In "The Old Cosmonaut and the Construction Worker Dream of Mars," by Ian McDonald, the lives of a young Indian construction worker and an old Estonian cosmonaut collide during the terraforming of Mars by quantum machines. Two young girls are desperate to survive on the surface of Mars after their commune's underground compound is destroyed by comet strikes in "Hanging Gardens," by Gregory Feeley. In "Digging," by Ian McDonald, a project has been undertaken to create a breathable atmosphere on Mars constructing a valley so deep that the planet's thin atmosphere will be forced into it. An amusing step-by-step program enables potential potentates to find the right Mars to rule over in "How to Become a Mars Overlord," by Catherynne M. Valente. In the Hugo Award winning story "The Emperor of Mars," by Allen M. Steele, a laborer on a corporate-owned Martian colony transforms himself into royalty while coping with a tragedy on Earth. A young girl defies the conventional role she's fated for on Mars in "La Malcontenta," by Liz Williams. In "The Burial of Sir John Mawe at Cassini," by Chez Brenchley, a gravedigger uncovers many secrets at the burial of a hanged British nobleman on a Victorian Mars. A colonist provides a moving account of his life on Mars to inspire a new generation of Martians in "Martian Heart," by John Barnes. In "The Vicar of Mars," by Gwyneth Jones, a High Priest suffers hauntings after visiting an old, reclusive, wealthy woman on Mars. A rough and tumble Martian mining town reconstructs a lawman from the Old American West to restore order in "Wyatt Earp 2.0," by Wil McCarthy. In "An Ocean is a Snowflake, Four Billion Miles Away," by John Barnes, the rivalry between two documentarians, filming on Mars, puts them in peril as the planet is being terraformed. A corporation building New Las Vegas on Mars grooms a janitor for rock stardom to improve worker morale in "The Rise and Fall of Paco Cohen and the Mariachis of Mars," by Ernest Hogan. In "Martian Blood," by Allen M. Steele, an Egyptian-American astrobiologist travels to a Martian aboriginal settlement to prove his theory that life on Earth originated on Mars. Pilgrims, tourists, and locals visit the many monoliths of Mars to commune with their unknown builders through radio bursts in "The Monoliths of Mars," by Paul McAuley. In "The Martian Job," by Jaine Fenn, the greatest heist known to humankind, with many a double-cross, is pulled on the largest corporation on Mars. The first man to step foot on Mars recounts his life's story as mankind ends its colonization of the planet in "Mars Abides," by Stephen Baxter. And finally, in the Locus Award winning story "The Martian Obelisk," by Linda Nagata, a robotic crawler threatens the remote construction of a monument on Mars, by an architect on Earth, as it approaches the obelisk.