There is no precedent in postwar American history for the destruction of the town of Paradise, California. On November 8, 2018, the community of 27,000 people was swallowed by the ferocious Camp Fire, which razed virtually every home and killed at least 85 people. The catastrophe seared the American imagination, taking the front page of every major national newspaper and top billing on the news networks. It displaced tens of thousands of people, yielding a refugee crisis that continues to unfold.
“Fire in Paradise has the narrative propulsion and granular detail of the best breaking-news disaster journalism."
—NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW
"Powerful. . . A riveting narrative that provides further compelling evidence for the urgency of environmental stewardship."
—Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"A frightening book that will make readers take stock of their own home surroundings, regional infrastructure, and the values of our times."
—ANNIE PROULX, AUTHOR OF BARKSKINS
—ADAM HIGGINBOTHAM, author of Midnight in Chernobyl
“A gripping and meticulously reported account of how one California community was wiped from the map, and a terrifying bellwetherof the mounting personal costs of the world’s climate emergency.”
"This remarkable account will remind you of the power of the human spirit, even or especially, in a crisis."
—BILL McKIBBEN, AUTHOR OF FALTER
"Gee and Anguiano’s on-the-ground reporting from California’s deadliest wildfire is so riveting and evocative that you can almost smell the smoke―not just from the oaks and pines, but from all the scorched vinyl-sided homes, melted car tires, and exploding propane tanks."
—DAN EGAN, AUTHOR OF THE DEATH AND LIFE OF THE GREAT LAKES
“A tense and detailed account…Gee and Anguiano vividly describe the conflagration without sensationalizing it…This impressive report makes a convincing case that such tragedies as the Camp Fire are not a freak occurrence, but a glimpse of the future.”
"Drawing heavily on the powerful interviews they conducted at the time and in the stunned aftermath, [Alastair Gee and Dani Anguiano] have created a gripping account of the fire and how it affected the community."
MEET THE AUTHORS
writes for the Guardian and was formerly a reporter for the Chico Enterprise-Record, where she covered Butte County, including Chico and Paradise. Having lived in Butte County for a decade, Anguiano now resides in the San Francisco Bay area.
is an award-winning editor and reporter at the Guardian who has also written for The New Yorker online, the New York Times, and the Economist. Gee lives in New York City.
What happened in Paradise was unprecedented in America. Yet according to climate scientists and fire experts, it will surely happen again.