Reading Guide: The Future
1. History is often described as a story we tell ourselves about the past. How does Leroux’s alternate history of Fort Détroit compare with other histories of the region?
2. What opportunities—and challenges—do you imagine are presented by writing a fictional version of a real place?
3. The children of the Rouge depend on each other for survival. How does their society compare with other depictions—in fiction, or in the real world—of groups of young people?
4. Climate fiction is an increasingly popular genre for novelists. Why do you think this is? What role do you think art can play in addressing environmental issues?
5. The children of the Rouge are distrustful of adults, but must learn to accept their help. How is intergenerational trust damaged—and repaired—in the novel? What role does it play in a time of climate crisis?
6. There are many elements of magical realism in The Future: houses burn down and reconstitute themselves, animals communicate with children, and myths come to life. How might the magic in the book shed light on our relationship with nature?