American Fire

American Fire

Love, Arson, and Life in A Vanishing Land

Book - 2017
Average Rating:
6
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One hundred years ago Accomack was the richest rural county in the nation. Slowly it's been drained of its industry-- agriculture-- as well as its wealth and population. The arsons started on a November night in 2012 and didn't stop for months. The people waited to see which abandoned building would burn down next, regarding each other at first with compassion, and later suspicion. Vigilante groups sprang up; volunteer firefighters slept at their stations. The culprits were galvanized by a surprising love story built on tight budgets and simple pleasures, in a land half gutted before the fires even began.
Publisher: New York, N.Y. : Liveright Publishing Corporation, [2017]
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9781631490514
1631490516
Branch Call Number: 364.1642 H463
Characteristics: 255 pages, 8 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 25 cm

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AL_PAMELAH Jan 16, 2018

Ever wonder why people set fires? In the case of the 80 fires set in 5 months in Accomack County, Virginia, love might have had something to do with it. An interesting look at life on the rural Eastern Shore, and why people do what they really know they shouldn't.

p
pamelah1
Jan 16, 2018

Ever wonder why people set fires? In the case of the 80 fires set in 5 months in Accomack County, Virginia, love might have had something to do with it. An interesting look at life on the rural Eastern Shore, and why people do what they really know they shouldn't.

LPL_LizS Nov 03, 2017

A fascinating look into the daily lives of citizens of rural Accomack County, Virginia who are trying to deal with a devastating string of crimes. Hesse captures the arson in great journalistic detail, weaving a lot of information into a compelling narrative. These fires illuminate the deep struggles of a small community with a dying economy, where everyone is just looking for a better life.

t
topekasue
Oct 31, 2017

Reads as one would expect since it's a journalist's expanded writings of a featured crime story. Well-told tale of a Virginia county forced to adjust life to a never-ending series of arson fires that take a tremendous toll on all its residents, including the arsonists.

m
MplsTA
Oct 22, 2017

The story isn't just about the many fires but the person(s) responsible for setting them. What is most amazing is the "why". It's a twisted and sad story but compelling.

Cynthia_N Aug 23, 2017

It was astonishing to read how many fires were set before the culprits were caught. There were people camping at abandoned home sites and cameras set up but it still took months before they were able to catch the guilty parties. Good read!

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