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Scar Vegas and Other Stories

Paine, Tom

ISBN 10: 0152164707 / ISBN 13: 9780152164706
Published by Harcourt, San Diego, 2002
Condition: Near Fine Hardcover
From Black Falcon Books (Wellesley, MA, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

First printing, full letter line (A-F). Dated, inscribed, and signed by the author on the front endpaper: "April 4, 2000 / Dear C--, / Thanks so much for hosting the discussion of my book at your beautiful home, with your wonderful friends! / Best, Tom." Also signed on the title page: "Tom Paine." Book is tight, square, and unmarked; spine ends bumped. The dust jacket is not price-clipped (original price $22.00). Brodart protected. Bookseller Inventory # 003218

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Scar Vegas and Other Stories

Publisher: Harcourt, San Diego

Publication Date: 2002

Binding: Hard Cover

Book Condition:Near Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Near Fine

Signed: Signed by Author

Edition: First Edition

About this title


Jarrett is sixteen—old enough to reject the railroad job his father wants him to take, old enough to court Lizbeth Whitcomb, old enough to join the fight against the forest fires that are destroying Idaho and Montana. But the fires are worse than anyone dreamed, and soon the flames have has come between Jarrett and everything he holds dear, between Jarrett and Lizbeth, and thrown him into the company of a young black private named Seth, whose own plans to desert the army have been cut short by the disaster.
A about the biggest wildfire of the century--the big blow-up of 1910--The Big Burn is a portrait of a time, a place, and an event that changed the way we fight wildfires, altered the landscape of Idaho and Montana, and transformed forever the lives of the people at the front lines.


"Out there in the distance, the pink spread from sky to ground, became a pink-and-red-and-bronze mass of color billowing up in the southwest and running toward him. Sticks appeared to be tumbling through the air before it. Then Jarrett realized they were too far away to be sticks. My god, he thought, those are trees."

Wildfires were a terrifying experience 100 years ago, and they have become equally terrifying to many Americans in recent drought years. The Big Burn is based on the true story of one of the worst wildfires of the century, a conflagration that destroyed 2.5 million acres of public land and killed 90 people. In the hot, dry summer of 1910, hundreds of small fires were burning all over Montana and the Idaho panhandle, lit by dry thunderstorms, sparks from trains, untended campfires. On August 20, a blowup began as the many blazes, pushed by wind, raced up the slopes until they joined to ignite a crown fire that roared across treetops, creating its own wind in a mighty inferno.

This novel tells the story of three pairs of young people in the fire's path: Ranger Samuel Logan and his 16-year-old brother Jarrett, who yearns to fight this fiery monster; Lizbeth, who loves the forest, and her aunt Celia, who wants only to profit from it; and two African American soldiers, honorable Seth and his shifty sidekick, Abel. The way their lives interlock with the fire and each other, and the "field notes" that document the course of the blaze make up a thrilling novel with much authenticity for the place and time and for the nature of wildfire itself. (Ages 10 to 14) --Patty Campbell

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