Trial by Fire: A Devastating Tragedy, 100 Lives Lost, and a 15-Year Search for Truth

Backorder (temporarily out of stock)

Product Details

$29.99  $27.89
Thomas Dunne Books
Publish Date
6.5 X 9.3 X 1.4 inches | 1.3 pounds

Earn by promoting books

Earn money by sharing your favorite books through our Affiliate program.

Become an affiliate

About the Author

SCOTT JAMES is the bestselling author of the novels The Sower and Soma, finalist for the national Lambda Literary Award for debut fiction, under the pen name Kemble Scott. With his weekly eponymous San Francisco column for The New York Times, James found stories that drew coverage from other national and international media, including The New Yorker, The London Times, The Guardian, and many more. He's been honored with three Emmy Awards for his work in television news. He lives in San Francisco, and is co-founder of The Castro Writers' Cooperative, known as The Coop, a co-working space for Bay Area writers.


"Everything you thought you knew about the [Station nightclub] fire is probably wrong....Trial By Fire details the many misconceptions about the blaze....This is not a book simply about uncovering truths. This is about the people whose lives were changed forever by the blaze....Trial by Fire reminds us that tragedies do not always have villains, but they do have flawed humans and institutions. And the result is that there are victims, and in the case of The Station nightclub fire, far too many of them."--Mike Kirby, The Sun Chronicle (Attleboro, MA)

The author's account is minutely detailed, its technical discussions punctuated by human-interest-story portraits of the victims...An unsettling history of horrific events whose memory is still fresh. --Kirkus Reviews

James draws on his knowledge of the state's politics and interviews with the principal players to present a complete, affecting picture of the tragedy's terrible human cost. This is essential reading for true crime fans. --Publisher's Weekly

When Scott James tells the tragedy of The Station nightclub fire, he does for Rhode Island what Truman Capote did for Kansas. With new evidence and interviews, he traces the horror that left 100 dead and hundreds more scarred for life, and in James' new investigation, none are spared. From the judicial system to the media to the club owners and vendors, each is subjected to a reporter's skepticism, and an insider's unflinching compassion. This is journalism as it is meant to be. --Raj Patel, New York Times bestselling author of The Value of Nothing

Well-researched and well written... it is well worth reading for true crime fans who are tired of serial killers. --Booklist

"Trial by Fire sucks you in faster than flames racing across an oil-based ceiling before pulling you into the wrangling and untangling of the aftermath. Scott James' investigative journalism reads like an Agatha Christie whodunit." --Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Alex Storozynski, author of The Peasant Prince

"Trial by Fire is an incredible work of investigative writing and storytelling that thankfully never loses sight of the people at the heart of this awful tragedy. This is a story of community, of those that existed prior to the horrific events at The Station Nightclub and those that were born out of it. James brings the proper amount of compassion, skepticism and nuance to construct a narrative that is as engaging as it is, at times, alarming." --Academy Award winning filmmaker Daniel Lindsay, for best documentary "Undefeated."