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'The Water-Babies' by Charles Kingsley

The story is about little chimney sweep who was chased out of town. He ends up under the water with a group of other young children. The Guardian says this is about social reform and not only did the story have an effect on children, it reformed legislation about the suffering of young children, forced to work in chimneys to keep them clean. The story is discomforting for both children and adults to read.