This well-written, well-researched book introduces readers to the concept of fire as a destructive force of nature and, often, set deliberately or accidentally by people. Six chapters detail what fires are, how and why different fires through history have started, which parts of the world are more likely to have fire disasters/places where spectacular fires have occurred, and the various ways we define how bad a fire is. It also explains how fire safety has changed over time because of fire disasters on passenger boats, in buildings, and so on. The final two chapters focus on how people come to others' rescue during and because of fire disasters, what we may be able to expect in the future concerning firefighting, and the general prevention of fires. A time line of amazing fires through history, beginning with the destruction of the Temple of Artemis in 356 B.C. and concluding with the 2006 fire season in Nepal, helps clarify the earlier comments in the book concerning "hot spots" in the world and through history. A glossary and source notes section provides other sources for interested readers. I also found the "Places to Visit" section quite interesting, as it allows American readers to consider museums that showcase fires. A worthy read.