The Big Burn by Timothy Egan
Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire that Saved America

No critic rating

Waiting for minimum critic reviews

See 1 Critic Review

The Big Burn tells an epic story, paints a moving portrait of the people who lived it, and offers a critical cautionary tale for our time.


Timothy Egan turns his historian's eye to the largest-ever forest fire in America and offers an epic, cautionary tale for our time.

On the afternoon of August 20, 1910, a battering ram of wind moved through the drought-stricken national forests of Washington, Idaho, and Montana, whipping the hundreds of small blazes burning across the forest floor into a roaring inferno that jumped from treetop to ridge as it raged, destroying towns and timber in the blink of an eye. Forest rangers had assembled nearly ten thousand men to fight the fires, but no living person had seen anything like those flames, and neither the rangers nor anyone else knew how to subdue them. Egan recreates the struggles of the overmatched rangers against the implacable fire with unstoppable dramatic force, and the larger story of outsized president Teddy Roosevelt and his chief forester, Gifford Pinchot, that follows is equally resonant. Pioneering the notion of conservation, Roosevelt and Pinchot did nothing less than create the idea of public land as our national treasure, owned by every citizen. Even as TR's national forests were smoldering they were saved: The heroism shown by his rangers turned public opinion permanently in favor of the forests, though it changed the mission of the forest service in ways we can still witness today.

This e-book includes a sample chapter of SHORT NIGHTS OF THE SHADOW CATCHER.


About Timothy Egan

See more books from this Author
TIMOTHY EGAN is a Pulitzer Prize winning reporter and the author of six books, most recently The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt and the Fire That Saved America, a New York Times bestseller and winner of the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Award and the Washington State Book Award. His previous books include The Worst Hard Time, which won a National Book Award and was named a New York Times Editors' Choice. He is an online op-ed columnist for the New York Times, writing his "Opinionator" feature once a week.He is a third-generation Westerner and lives in Seattle.  
Published September 7, 2010 by Mariner Books. 352 pages
Genres: History, Nature & Wildlife, Professional & Technical, Science & Math, Biographies & Memoirs. Non-fiction
Add Critic Review

Critic reviews for The Big Burn
All: 1 | Positive: 1 | Negative: 0


on Aug 17 2013

The Big Burn tells an epic story, paints a moving portrait of the people who lived it, and offers a critical cautionary tale for our time.

Read Full Review of The Big Burn: Teddy Roosevelt...

Reader Rating for The Big Burn

An aggregated and normalized score based on 535 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes

Rate this book!

Add Review