Into the Firestorm
A Novel of San Francisco, 1906
What is this book about?
“I believe I can just see you on the streets of that bright city.”
Gran’s gone now, but her words live on with Nicholas Dray, almost twelve, as he makes his way from the hot cotton fields to that Queen of Cities: San Francisco. Nick’s on his own for the first time, with nowhere to turn. Then he meets jaunty, talkative Pat Patterson, owner of the most beautiful store — and the friendliest golden dog — in all the city. And for the first time in months, Nick feels safe. Safe in San Francisco.
But the year is 1906, the month is April, and early one morning the walls begin to shake. The floor begins to buckle. And the earth opens up. A devastating earthquake and then raging firestorms ravage the city, and Nick is right in the middle of it all. But for a young boy who’s got few ties and nothing to lose, what’s the right choice: escape to safety or stay — at deadly risk — to help others?
A suspenseful and carefully researched novel of the Great 1906 San Francisco Earthquake and Fire and of one boy’s heroic fight to survive it.
“Based on eyewitness accounts, the tale brings to life an event young readers will find fascinating.” (Kirkus Reviews)
“Middle graders in search of quick, entertaining historical fiction — ideal for book reports — should take a look.” (The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books)
author, Deborah Hopkinson
Knopf Books for Young Readers
ages 8 and up, 2006