The Space Between Worlds (Hardcover)
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An outsider who can travel between worlds discovers a secret that threatens her new home and her fragile place in it, in a stunning sci-fi debut that’s both a cross-dimensional adventure and a powerful examination of identity, privilege, and belonging.
Multiverse travel is finally possible, but there’s just one catch: No one can visit a world where their counterpart is still alive. Enter Cara, whose parallel selves happen to be exceptionally good at dying—from disease, turf wars, or vendettas they couldn’t outrun. Cara’s life has been cut short on 372 worlds in total.
On this Earth, however, Cara has survived. Identified as an outlier and therefore a perfect candidate for multiverse travel, Cara is plucked from the dirt of the wastelands. Now she has a nice apartment on the lower levels of the wealthy and walled-off Wiley City. She works—and shamelessly flirts—with her enticing yet aloof handler, Dell, as the two women collect off-world data for the Eldridge Institute. She even occasionally leaves the city to visit her family in the wastes, though she struggles to feel at home in either place. So long as she can keep her head down and avoid trouble, Cara is on a sure path to citizenship and security.
But trouble finds Cara when one of her eight remaining doppelgängers dies under mysterious circumstances, plunging her into a new world with an old secret. What she discovers will connect her past and her future in ways she could have never imagined—and reveal her own role in a plot that endangers not just her world, but the entire multiverse.
About the Author
Micaiah Johnson was raised in California’s Mojave Desert surrounded by trees named Joshua and women who told stories. She received her bachelor of arts in creative writing from the University of California, Riverside, and her master of fine arts in fiction from Rutgers University–Camden. She now studies American literature at Vanderbilt University, where she focuses on critical race theory and automatons.
“Micaiah Johnson’s debut is a punk album, presenting a world where even our possibilities are colonized. I loved every twisting minute of it.”—Alex White, author of A Big Ship at the Edge of the Universe
“The Space Between Worlds lands squarely in my sweet spot: gorgeous writing, mind-bending world-building, razor-sharp social commentary, and a main character who demands your attention—and your allegiance.”—Rob Hart, author of The Warehouse
“A gritty, riveting, and ultimately hopeful novel about the people, choices, and relationships that make us who we are—in this world, and in those we can only imagine.”—Kameron Hurley, Hugo and Locus award–winning author of The Light Brigade
“Johnson’s world-hopping debut uses science fictional tools and an exciting plot to address urgent questions of privilege and position. . . . A compelling stand-alone debut that will leave readers thrilled, thoughtful, and anticipating the author’s next book.”—Kirkus Reviews
“Johnson bursts onto the scene with this thought-provoking, high-concept sci-fi debut that impresses with exceptional worldbuilding and a distinctive protagonist.”—Publishers Weekly
“This exciting debut is intelligently built, with clever characters, surprise twists, plenty of action, subtly detailed worlds, and a plot that highlights social and racial inequities in astute prose.”—Library Journal (starred review)