This story documents the horrific circus fire in Hartford, Conn., in 1944 that killed 168 people and injured more than 600. Told from a variety of viewpoints -- from the victims of the fire, to the witnesses, to the suspected arsonist -- Paul B. Janeczko writes in a simple yet eerie?manner that makes this series of poems haunting.
The book brings light to an occurrence in history that isn't known?by many, but still is one of the worst fire-tragedies in America. Enticing in its language, "Worlds Afire" is beautiful despite its horrific subject.
As opposed to your standard history books, the author paints a picture of the fire from more than one angle, getting information from many different people such as children, parents, detectives, nurses and others affected by the tragedy. He lays out that information accordingly and artistically.
It is paced perfectly, with two parts: building up to the fire, as well as what happened during the fire along with the aftermath. It is a short read with an unforgettable story, and it led me to read more about the specifics of this little-known disaster that has helped defined U.S. history. Ages 10 and up.