The Circus Fire : A True Story of an American Tragedy
The Circus Fire A True Story of an American Tragedy Author:Stewart O'Nan The acclaimed author of A Prayer for the Dying brings all his narrative gifts to bear on this gripping account of tragedy and heroism-the great Hartford circus fire of 1944. — Halfway through a midsummer afternoon performance, Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus's big top caught fire. The tent had been waterproofed with a mixture of... more » paraffin and gasoline; in seconds it was burning out of control, and more than 8,000 people were trapped inside. Drawing on interviews with hundreds of survivors, O'Nan skillfully re-creates the horrific events and illuminates the psychological oddities of human behavior under stress: the mad scramble for the exits; the hero who tossed dozens of children to safety before being trampled to death.
Brilliantly constructed and exceptionally moving, The Circus Fire is history at its most compelling.« less
bookaddict reviewed The Circus Fire : A True Story of an American Tragedy on
Helpful Score: 2
This book is about the Ringling Bros/Barnum&Bailey fire in Hartford in 1944, in which the Big Top caught fire and 167 people died. I usually love Stewart O'Nan, but I confess that I found this one a wee bit dry.
From the back of the book:
"Stewart O'Nan [author of A Prayer For the Dying] brings all his narrative gifts to bear on this gripping account... Brilliantly constructed and exceptionally moving, The Circus Fire is history at its most compelling."
ReadingMonster reviewed The Circus Fire : A True Story of an American Tragedy on
Helpful Score: 2
Wow. This is an amazing book. I had heard of the Hartford Circus Fire tragedy, but had no previous inkling of the real magnitude of this tragedy. O'Nan's account is a fascinating and heartbreaking tale, that had me riveted throughout. My husband also enjoyed this book and we have lent it out to various friends. Very highly recommended from our perspective.