Dustborn Cover
Release DateApril 20, 2021

Delta of Dead River has always been told to hide her back, where a map is branded on her skin to a rumored paradise called the Verdant. In a wasteland plagued by dust squalls, geomagnetic storms, and solar flares, many would kill for it—even if no one can read it. So when raiders sent by a man known as the General attack her village, Delta suspects he is searching for her. 

Delta sets out to rescue her family but quickly learns that in the Wastes no one can be trusted—perhaps not even her childhood friend, Asher, who has been missing for nearly a decade. If Delta can trust Asher, she just might decode the map and trade evidence of the Verdant to the General for her family. What Delta doesn’t count on is what waits at the Verdant: a long-forgotten secret that will shake the foundation of her entire world.

Praise for Dustborn

⭐ Bowman sets high expectations and meets them in this standalone worthy of all YA shelves. An impeccably crafted dystopian.

School Library Journal, starred review

Intense, gritty, and propulsive… Will keep readers turning the pages.


Bowman skillfully portrays the privation and grief that Delta bears, alongside her determination to overcome each obstacle. Absorbing world-building propels this fast-paced adventure, which has crossover appeal and series potential.

Publishers Weekly

[A] harrowing journey across the dust…  A burgeoning romance with an old friend and a dramatic reveal towards the end give way to a satisfying ending, sure to please readers.


Richly drawn, with harrowing escapes from dust storms across parched land and a general sense of blistering doom…Readers will be left to ponder the sometimes warring forces of hope and truth—right after they find a cool drink of water.

The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

[A] captivating post-apocalyptic YA thriller.

Shelf Awareness

With its unforgettable blend of science fiction, dystopia, and Old West, Dustborn is one of those stories that stays branded to your heart long after you turn the final page. Prepare to be transported.

Jodi Meadows, New York Times bestselling author of My Plain Jane and the Fallen Isles Trilogy
Awards + Recognition
  • A YALSA “2022 Best Fiction for Young Adults” title
  • A New York Public Library “2021 Best Teen Books” title
  • A 2022 Bank Street selection for “Best Children’s Books of the Year

U.S. and Canada: HMH / Clarion

Audio: HMH / Clarion