The story of the book was taking place in a frozen planet where humans/ people essentially lived as nomads and there was a massive ?frozen? wall that a group had to traverse or follow.

Food was scarce and they were constantly cold and had very little shelter.

The book was published at least 12 years ago.

It's a science fiction setting (not a fantasy one), but I can't recall any details regarding technology or weapons.

  • Welcome to the site. You have a good start here. If you could take a look at this guide to help jog your memory and edit in any more details, that would be great. Every little bit helps us.
    – amflare
    Commented Jan 17, 2018 at 15:57
  • Thank you @amflare . Unfortunately that's all I remember. It reminded me a bit of en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anabasis_(Xenophon) but in a science fiction setting. I am not sure about weapons and use of tech.
    – J. Doe.
    Commented Jan 17, 2018 at 16:03
  • I don't understand why I am being downvoted here.
    – J. Doe.
    Commented Jan 17, 2018 at 16:08
  • 1
    Because it does not look like you put much effort into the question and it is very broad.
    – amflare
    Commented Jan 17, 2018 at 16:09
  • You say "in a frozen planet". Did you mean on, or is this a "hollow world" scenario?
    – RDFozz
    Commented Jan 17, 2018 at 18:21

2 Answers 2


This might be the fourth book from Doris Lessing's Canopus in Argos series, titled The Making of the Representative for Planet 8. In this book, a benevolent galactic hegemony directs the social and technological development of the civilization on "Planet 8", but due to circumstances that were left fairly vague in the narrative, the climate of the planet was permanently altered to begin a long freeze. During this time the citizens of Planet 8 were directed to build and maintain a wall along a particular parallel to shield the equatorial zone from arctic ice. The ending chapters of the narrative entailed circumnavigating the world by traversing the wall. Ecosystems were hard hit, and therefore food and shelter were scarce.

As I recall, Lessing wrote the story to address some of the spirituality, psychology, and what she felt was heroism of Scott's (real world) Terra Nova Expedition to the South Pole.

Here is a link to some of the covers for the book.

  • This is the one!
    – J. Doe.
    Commented Jan 19, 2018 at 8:29
  • @J.Doe. Wow! That felt like a long shot, but I am glad it landed for you! :) Lessing's Canopus in Argos books are crazy funky.
    – Lexible
    Commented Jan 20, 2018 at 4:45

Alastair Renold's "Absolution Gap" seems to be a fair match to the description. General thrust: There's an ice world with an orbiting artifact that sometimes opens up, apparently as a channel to an alternate reality or a different time in this one (details are a bit confusing). Someone wants to watch the artifact at all times so they don't miss any openings. This eventually leads to a whole sub-society on the planet consisting of a travelling caravan, constantly moving against the planet's rotation, effectively holding a fixed position relative to the artifact. The main (building/vehicle) of the caravan contains a support system for the watcher - it feeds/cleans/evacuates him constantly, holds open his eyelids and waters his eyes, keeps him sane without sleeping, and maintains a system of mirrors, all so he can watch the artifact continuously.

  • Yeah, but that's more of a perpetual pilgrimage. It is an ice world, but I don't recall them being terribly resource-poor, since new pilgrims arrived from space. Commented Jan 17, 2018 at 21:19
  • What a weird idea. What's wrong with overlapping shifts? Or computers (must have those if you can keep someone alive with no sleep).
    – Adamant
    Commented Jan 18, 2018 at 7:01
  • I wish I could accept more than one answer
    – J. Doe.
    Commented Jan 19, 2018 at 8:30

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