Rediscovering a book from childhood
January 1, 2006 8:42 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for a children's book that I can't remember the title to, but its story has stuck with me for years.

Basically London has gone through some sort of nuclear war kind of experience. The city has been domed over. Children (and adults) are told that outside of the dome is poisoned air, earth, and water, and never to venture out. One little girl is curious about the outside and wants to escape. She happens to meet someone who eventually can help her. A teddy bear is part of the story, I think it gets taken from her. The children's song "London Bridge is Falling Down" is prominent in the story. In the end, she escapes to the outside with the help of an adult (I think) and sees that the outside world is clean and beautiful. Does this description ring a bell with anyone?
posted by doublehelix to Writing & Language (7 answers total)
Best answer: Outside?
posted by TonyRobots at 9:01 AM on January 1, 2006

This page on the author's website indicates that a slightly shorter version was published a couple of years earlier under the title "London Bridge."
posted by TonyRobots at 9:05 AM on January 1, 2006

Response by poster: Wow, thanks! Outside - this is the book! I'm going to find it this week, or order it from Amazon. It is one of the most memorable books from my childhood and I'd love to revisit it. Thanks again, TonyRobots!
posted by doublehelix at 10:03 AM on January 1, 2006

My pleasure! For some reason, I love the AskMe questions that involve hunting for some fondly-recollected childhood object, and always jump on them. I'd never heard of this book before, but it was fun to track down...
posted by TonyRobots at 11:32 AM on January 1, 2006

That's funny - the plot of this story is remarkably similar to two of my favourite childhood books, "Devil on My Back" and especially its sequel "The Dream Catcher", by Monica Hughes.
posted by PercussivePaul at 12:03 PM on January 1, 2006

It's also a minor sub-plot in Michael Marshall Smith's "Only Forward" - there's a neighborhood called Stable which is also a hermetically sealed post-(fake)-nuclear war society...
posted by Jon Mitchell at 1:02 PM on January 1, 2006

A great resource for this sort of thing is the Booksleuth forum on
posted by lisaj32 at 8:54 PM on January 13, 2006

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