S. William Alderson
Last Updated on June 7, 2022, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 124
It is difficult to believe that Outside shares the same author as Knave of Dreams, for it is a very slight book, a mixture of When the Machine Stops, Survivors and many similar stories. It is loosely, but overtly based on the Pied Piper theme, though it is the children first, rather than the rats, that the Piper is taking, leading them to a new freedom outside the dying, machine-controlled city originally built to protect humans from the effects of pollution and radiation. That is all! No real plot, little excitement. It might entertain a few ten-year-olds, but it would be a sad disappointment for most SF readers. (p. 39)
S. William Alderson, in Children's Book Review (© 1976 Five Owls Press Ltd.; all rights reserved), October, 1976.