I'm looking for a short story that's slightly similar to "Under the Dome." Note: this is not Clifford Simak's "All Flesh is Grass," as I've been reading it and it's not ringing any bells. I also don't seem to recall this being a longer story, like a novel.

The plot went like this: a la "Under the Dome," some kind of invisible dome or barrier appeared around a town. I'm pretty sure those in the dome could communicate with those outside the dome.

It was discovered this obstruction wasn't really a dome or barrier. The town was something like one second in time ahead of or behind the rest of the world. Aliens had established the dome and I think in the end, the aliens "fixed" time and everything was restored to normal. I don't remember enough of the story to say that's the exact ending...it's just what I think I remember.

Definitely, though, the time difference is what put a barrier between the town and the rest of the world.

It was more sci-fi and less horror, so it wasn't all that much like "Under the Dome," only in the sense of having the obstruction around the town.

My guess is this story was part of an anthology, as I used to read a lot of those, particularly sci-fi. That also means the book was likely published in the '60s, '70s or early to mid '80s, as I used to frequent a great used bookstore. It's possible it was published earlier than that, though probably unlikely. It could have been by Asimov...but then it could have been by any sci-fi writer.

Sorry if that's not completely helpful...I'm going from distant memory. :P

Thanks in advance for any info! :)

  • Very long shot and long overdue, but the barrier-formed-via-time-separation is a feature of Howard Fast's "The First Men" -- however, it's a group of children that create the barrier, not aliens. Since it seems like it's this idea that you remember best, that may be where you got it from. Anyone else know of any stories that include the same type of barrier?
    – Otis
    Sep 5, 2015 at 2:43
  • FYI, see scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/54179/… and scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/33514/… for other questions that tell a bit more about "First Men" (to see if you recognize it).
    – Otis
    Sep 5, 2015 at 2:48
  • Actually, a former classmate and I are looking for the same story. We read it in either jr. high or high school, approx. 1968-1972. It was in a literature book with a collection of various stories. It was not in "Outlooks in Literature", as I have a copy of it. HELP!! Nov 13, 2016 at 21:52
  • Probably not the one you're looking for, but the plot shares a lot of DNA with Joe R. Landsdale's "The Drive-In" as well. A veil of mysterious impenetrable darkness envelops a Drive-In theater, and all the people within are trapped for many weeks. The expected "Lord of the Flies" degradation of social norms occurs, and when the veil finally lifts, they discover they're Not In Kansas Anymore, so to speak. More a recommendation than an answer. May 3, 2018 at 20:20
  • I think I am looking for the same anthology. It was about Aliens. And had a story about a rock in a quiet place and a family who had a daughter who had telepathic talents...maybe the aliens were called something like cloridians...and a story about a dome The book may have been called something like tales from the future....?
    – Camille
    Jan 1, 2021 at 16:16

3 Answers 3


Perhaps James Blish's "The Box" (1949) which talks about an unknown enemy placing a force field shield around New York. When I read the premise of "Under the Dome" I immediately flashed back to this story.

Although, differences from what you describe include the temporal anomaly and the presence of aliens.


It could possibly be the "Gone" series by Michael Grant

it features a large "dome" over the town of Perdido Beach, All People over 15 disappear, people start gaining strange powers,and saying anything more would probably spoil the story.

  • But is unlikely
    – Quilavadon
    May 13, 2018 at 5:29

L’Apparition des Surhommes B. R. Bruss

  • 8
    Could you provide some information as to why you think this answers the question?
    – K-H-W
    Feb 5, 2018 at 4:24

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