Looking for a book -- preachy scifi environmentist/natives v. westerners edition
August 13, 2012 12:02 PM   Subscribe

Looking for a book. It's based in a nearish future where something (I think the destruction of the moon) has given the Earth a ring. The protagonist was a young Inuit (I think) girl. I think the cover was blue.

I'm pretty sure I read this in elementary school (late eighties), but I tended to read above my age level back then so this could have been a young adult or full on novel. It definitely had chapters. It probably did not have (many) pictures.

As mentioned above, Earth has a ring now. This has caused great environmental upheaval in the form of an ice age/global cooling. The main conflict is between a tribe of Inuit people (who don't mind the cooling, so much), and a more technically advanced group of people trying to survive in (underground? dome?) modern structures.

The "westerners*" come up with an idea to start (dyeing? spraypainting?) the local snow black, so that it can do a better job of absorbing the little heat that is coming in from the sun. This is very bad for the Inuit because it affects something that they need to survive (kills off the deer, maybe)?

The protagonist is a young Inuit girl who ends up inside the "westerners" structure somehow. I think that maybe she was sent by her tribe to ask the "westeners" to please not starve them to death -- but it's possible that maybe she was kidnapped? At the very least, the people of the dome were terrible to her at first.

I definitely remember one scene where she encounters a shower for the first time and is shocked that "these people have the power to command even the rain to their whims"

I was living in Toronto, ON when I read this, so I wouldn't be surprised if it was a Canadian author. I feel a strong intuition that the title involved the word "ring" or earth", but lots of googling hasn't come up with much.

*this is probably a horrible term, but I couldn't come up with anything more accurate -- it's not natives v. europeans b/c it's far enough in the future that there is nothing to say that the non-natives were necessarily european. It's possible also that the natives are even natives -- they might be a bunch of luddites who decided to adapt to the environmental collapse by taking on the "native" way of life.
posted by sparklemotion to Writing & Language (6 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
How about Ring Rise, Ring Set by Monica Hughes? Canadian author, YA science fiction, Ekoes v Techs, young heroine, blue cover, and I too read it in the eighties (but honestly don't remember more than the cover illustration).
posted by ManyLeggedCreature at 12:35 PM on August 13, 2012

I think that might just be it. Maybe it wasn't the heroine who ended up stuck with the "techs"? Maybe it was her Ekoe boyfriend who came to "rescue" her when the Techs took her back?

Either way, I've ordered a used copy so hopefully I'll know soon!
posted by sparklemotion at 1:08 PM on August 13, 2012

I definitely remember reading a book about dome-dwellers by Monica Hughes in the early 1990s, in Canada. If it's not Ring Rise, Ring Set, maybe look at her other work? (I don't remember any plots in detail.)
posted by snorkmaiden at 1:09 PM on August 13, 2012

I definitely remember reading a book about dome-dwellers by Monica Hughes in the early 1990s, in Canada. If it's not Ring Rise, Ring Set, maybe look at her other work? (I don't remember any plots in detail.)

I don't recognise the book in the post, but I can say that Monica Hughes has a book about a dome city called Devil on My Back (also a sequel, The Dream Catcher) - which is a great book, but definitely not the one described (the main character is male, there is no ring, no environmental conflict - really it's about class and social control).
posted by jb at 2:09 PM on August 13, 2012

Snorkmaiden, there are dome-dwellers in my favourite books of hers, the duology Devil on my Back and The Dream Catcher. I reread them enough times that I'm sure neither is the one the OP wants - but for the sake of nostalgia, you might want to give them a go!
posted by ManyLeggedCreature at 2:10 PM on August 13, 2012

As a follow-up, it totally was Ring Rise, Ring Set, and it was so much worse than I remembered it.

I don't know why my school librarian thought that Stockholm Syndrome was a good feature for a Strong Female Protagonist to display. The Natives (Ekoes) were also basically portrayed as selfish savages (though I am willing to admit that was maybe not what the author was going for).

Thanks all!
posted by sparklemotion at 5:15 PM on September 12, 2012

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