Worlds Afire

Worlds Afire

5.0 1
by Paul B. Janeczko
     
 

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"Riveting. . . . A memorable historical fiction selection, similar in intensity to Karen Hesse’s OUT OF THE DUST and WITNESS." -- SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL (starred review)

One summer afternoon in 1944, hundreds of circus lovers crowded under the big top in Hartford, waiting for the show to begin. Minutes later, a fire broke out and spread

Overview

"Riveting. . . . A memorable historical fiction selection, similar in intensity to Karen Hesse’s OUT OF THE DUST and WITNESS." -- SCHOOL LIBRARY JOURNAL (starred review)

One summer afternoon in 1944, hundreds of circus lovers crowded under the big top in Hartford, waiting for the show to begin. Minutes later, a fire broke out and spread through the tent, claiming the lives of 167 souls and injuring some 500 more. Paul B. Janeczko recalls that tragic event by bringing to life some unforgettable voices -- from circus performers to seasoned fans, from firefi ghters to ushers. Using the lyrical power of language to render tragedy with a human face, this spare, startling book in verse leaves an emotional impact young readers will not soon forget.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A searing account . . . that readers will not easily forget." — Karen Hesse

From the Hardcover edition.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780763634001
Publisher:
Candlewick Press
Publication date:
03/27/2007
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
112
Sales rank:
1,172,211
Product dimensions:
5.02(w) x 8.11(h) x 0.33(d)
Age Range:
12 Years

Read an Excerpt

We laid nine hundred feet of hose

then another hundred and a half.

About a ton of hose.

But we all knew

we were too late.

There was no tent

just folding chairs

and bleachers blazing

like nobody's business.

Too hot to get close.

See, they dip

their chairs in paint

and hang them up to dry,

so as the years pass

they're adding another layer of paint

eager to burn.

But that's not half the problem

of the tent itself.

To keep the rain out

they coat the canvas

with paraffin mixed with gasoline,

laid on good and thick with stiff brooms.

Oh, that waterproofs it all right—

been doing it that way for years—

but what does it give you?

One huge candle

just waiting for a light.

From the Hardcover edition.

Meet the Author

Paul B. Janeczko is a renowned poetry anthologist who has edited more than twenty collections for young readers, including A POKE IN THE I: A COLLECTION OF CONCRETE POEMS, which was both a NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW Best Illustrated Book and a PUBLISHERS WEEKLY Best Book of the Year, and SEEING THE BLUE BETWEEN: ADVICE AND INSPIRATION FOR YOUNG POETS. He is also a brilliant poet in his own right, and with WORLDS AFIRE removes his anthologist’s hat and assumes a full-fledged role as author and poet. He says, "More than anything else, I wanted to give a voice to the people whose lives were forever changed by the fire. And to give those who perished a chance to speak as well."

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Worlds Afire 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago