I am looking for a novel in which the human race has moved into pods to escape a toxic Earth.

In one of the pods the lights fail. When the pods are opened the humans inside have evolved without sight.

  • 5
    You could improve this question by going through the checklists here and editing in any relevant info you can think to add.
    – Valorum
    Feb 14, 2022 at 9:12
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    The most important bit of missing information is when. When did you read this?
    – SQB
    Feb 14, 2022 at 9:26
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    Very, very faint similarities to Daniel F. Galouye's "Dark Universe" (which had tunnels instead of pods, and adaption instead of evolution - people used echolocation after the lights in the tunnels went out). Feb 14, 2022 at 10:45
  • Thank you. That could be it!
    – Danielle
    Feb 15, 2022 at 8:03
  • @EikePierstorff please do post it as an answer! Then the OP can accept it with the green tick if it's correct (or another answer if needed! :D)
    – AncientSwordRage
    Feb 15, 2022 at 10:10

1 Answer 1


The general topic of people living in dark tunnels (not pods, as per the question) is covered in Daniel F. Galouye's "Dark Universe" (1961).

Mankind has retreated to tunnels, after the surface has been believed to be rendered uninhabitable by nuclear radiation. In one of the tunnel systems, the lights fail and humans have to learn to live in permanent darkness. The majority population resorts to echolocation (in the way blind people do, not as a special power), while a minority population develops infrared vision. The surface world has been forgotten, civilization has regressed to subsistence farming, and people pray to a defunct incandescent bulb as a symbol for the light that one day will return, even if they have no idea anymore what that means.

Turmoil breaks out when people get abducted and, one by one, the hot springs that enable farming dry up. It turns out that survivors from the other tunnel systems, who had light and retained pre-catastrophic levels of civilisation all along, have repopulated the surface and try to integrate the light-less tribes back into society, without wiping out their cultural identity.

So, beyond the general topic not all that much resemblance to the question, but since I was encouraged to make this an answer I will happily oblige (because that is really a good book and well worth reading).

  • 1
    This has a good chance of being exactly the story OP was looking for. Details get misremembered all the time.
    – Spencer
    Feb 15, 2022 at 14:57

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