I read a series of books written in English (possibly a trilogy) in the early 1980s and was hoping to find them again for my children. The details I remember are:

  1. It was set on a planet and spanned many, many years over the course of the books
  2. There was a sort of 'housekeeper/protector' robot that featured in all of them but was slightly the worse for wear by the end
  3. One of the books had a young dark-skinned boy who made the hike up to the house where the robot was, and someone made reference to the fact that his dark skin protected him from the incredibly fierce sun found in the higher regions of the planet.

1 Answer 1


This is almost certainly Monica Hughes's Isis series:

  1. The Keeper of the Isis Light

Olwen is a young human woman living on the planet Isis as the keeper of the Light (a navigation beacon). Her parents having died, her only companion is a robotic DaCoP (Data Collector and Processor), called Guardian. On Olwen's 16th birthday (10th on Isis), the Guardian tells her that settlers are coming from Earth to Cascade Valley. Olwen is in distress thinking that these settlers will ruin her perfect world.

Guardian explains that she must wear a special protective suit to protect her from the viruses and bacteria the settlers might be carrying. One of the younger settlers, Mark London, falls in love with Olwen, and Olwen wishes Guardian to allow her to see Mark without her suit. Guardian refuses.

One day, Mark overhears Guardian discussing some of Olwen's blood samples with Dr. MacDonald and he thinks Olwen might be in trouble so he climbs up towards her house. When he sees Olwen, he suffers an accident and falls from the top of Lighthouse Mesa. This turns out to be because of his shock at Olwen's appearance under the suit.

Later, Guardian tells Olwen the truth about the death of her parents, and his subsequent care of her as her mother wished. To keep Olwen safe, he changed her genetically, so the ultraviolet rays from Isis' sun, Ra, would not harm her, allowing her to climb to Isis' mountain heights. Shocked at the realization that Mark fell because of her, Olwen tries to enjoy playing with her favourite pet, a dragon-like native animal called Hobbit, when Hobbit is shot by hunting settlers. In rage, Olwen chases the Hunters back to the village. When the settlers see Olwen, they are disgusted by her appearance. Olwen refuses to wear the suit and vows to never go down into Cascade Valley again.

During a sudden solar storm, Olwen rescues a young settler boy, Jody, who was outside in the midst of the storm. The settlers do not know how to react to Olwen saving Jody.

The story ends with Olwen deciding to leave Cascade Valley, and live in isolation with Guardian.

  1. The Guardian of Isis

Mark London is now president of the settlement. He has forced the people to abandon all technology and become a simple, agricultural community full of taboos. Upper Isis is now a forbidden zone, because, so they believe, the Guardian put a curse on the mountains, imprisoning the people in their own valley. One boy, Jody N'Kumo, grandson of one of the original settlers, breaks one of the most sacred taboos, and is banished to the land of Guardian, although everyone knows he is simply being sent to his death. However, Jody does not die, and discovers a place called Bamboo Valley. There he meets the Lady Olwen, who was the Keeper of the Isis Light in the times before the colony, and learns the truth about the history of Isis.

  1. The Isis Pedlar

The leader of the colony is Roger London, Mark London's son. London seems to be nothing like his father, however. Mike Flynn, a Galactic wanderer, spots Isis, and plans to corrupt the inhabitants to obtain the precious firestones. He promises them a Forever Machine, which will supply them with a lifetime of ambrosia, which means they will never have to work for their food again. His daughter, Moira, however, knows that he is simply lying, and tries to stop Mike's evil plans with the help of David N'Kumo, great grandson of Jody N'Kumo. When David and Moira succeed, Jody N'Kumo becomes president, instead of Roger London. Moira decides to stay on Isis, and Guardian, goes with Mike Flynn. Things look much brighter for a future for Isis.


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