Press

To interview Fernanda Santos, please contact Steven Boriack, Flatiron Books, at steven.boriack@flatironbooks.com
The Western Writers of America named "The Fire Line" the winner of the 2017 Spur Award for Best First Nonfiction Book. Since 1953, Western Writers of America has promoted and honored the best in Western literature with the annual Spur Awards, given for works whose inspiration, image and literary excellence best represent the reality and spirit of the American West. Read more.
Screen Shot 2016-05-10 at 1.19.00 PM People Magazine: "Meticulously researched and as dramatic as any thriller, Santos's account of the 2013 Arizona wildfire that killed 19 firefighters will keep you on the edge of your seat and break your heart."
TheFireLine Associated Press: "In this riveting and poignant narrative, Fernanda Santos introduces the reader to a brave band of men, most of them in their 20s, who battle destructive wildfires that pose a mounting threat as developers in the West build vacation and retirement homes in areas where urban boundaries intersect with fire-prone woods and brush. Based in Prescott, Arizona, Granite Mountain was one of 107 elite Hotshot crews in the U.S. at the time of the 2013 fire and the only one run by a municipality." Read more.
book nypostThe New York Post: "It was the biggest loss of firefighters since 9/11. In her first book, Santos tells the story of the June 30, 2013, Yarnell Hill fire that killed 19 members of the elite group of men and women sent out to battle raging wildfires around the country. The tight-knit Hotshots — who lived 45 minutes form the scene of the Arizona fire — included likely heroes, such as Marines, and unlikely ones, like convicted felons. A riveting account of a hellish day and the communications breakdowns that may have contributed to the tragedy." Read more.
fernanda books The Seattle Times: "Fires, like wars, often fit a pattern in their telling. Introduce the men, map out the terrain, explain the enemy, tell what went wrong and bury the dead. Fernanda Santos takes this logical storytelling foundation and uses her deep reporting and clear writing to build a compelling story of how 19 firefighters died on June 30, 2013, in the Yarnell Hill Fire near Prescott, Ariz." Read more.
On The Weather Channel's 23.5º with Sam Champion, Fernanda Santos talks about wildfires, climate change and 19 firefighters profiled in her book, "The Fire Line."

Robert Caldwell, Bravo Squad bossIn a New York Times Sunday Review op-ed, Fernanda Santos talks about the lingering grief and devastation in Yarnell, Ariz., three years after the wildfire that killed 19 firefighters, a story she tells in her book, "The Fire Line." Read more.
Screen Shot 2016-05-06 at 11.41.26 AMThe New York Times: Those who fight wildfires base what they do on a ranked list of priorities, and at the very top is life and safety. If neither can be ensured, the only sensible option is to disengage. Read more. As part of my research for a book about that fire, I took a basic wildland firefighting course, where we used green or orange shelters, not silver ones. On go, we had 25 seconds to whip them out, grasp the handles marked “right hand” and “left hand,” shake the shelters open, step inside and drop to the ground. Read More.
fernanda nick ozaGizmodo:  Gizmodo lists The Fire Line as "one of the books you desperately need to add to your to-read pile this summer." Read more.  
TheFireLineColorado Public Radio: Cathy Langer, buyer for Tattered Cover Bookstores in Denver, lists "The Fire Line" as a must-read this summer. Read more.  
The Prescott Valley Tribune wrote that the public library system in Prescott Valley, Arizona, encouraged every local resident to read "The Fire Line" in the spring of 2017 as part of its Community Reads grant, which promotes reading and Arizona literature in the state. Read more.
Fernanda-Santos-photo-260x260 The Well Woman Show: Fernanda spoke to Giovanna Rossi, host of The Well Woman Show, about conquering her fears to tackle her most challenging professional project so far, the reporting and writing of her first book, "The Fire Line."    
The_Fire_Line_front_jacket_for_CS.inddBoston University Alumni Magazine: "The story reads as if Santos tagged along with the Granite Mountain Hotshots in the field, but in fact, she never met them. She relied heavily on interviews with their families and friends to flesh out the characters. She interviewed scientists and climate experts as well. Wildfires, she writes, are becoming more prevalent because of climate change and increased urban development. She spent part of 2014 training at the Arizona Wildfire and Incident Management Academy to learn how to fight fires." Read more
New Mexico in Focus:
5759f8ab83aea.imageSanta Fe New Mexican: Don’t look for definitive answers in Fernanda Santos’ book The Fire Line. That’s not why the New York Times’ Phoenix bureau chief wrote about the devastating loss of 19 highly trained firefighters in Yarnell, Arizona, on June 30, 2013. She wasn’t looking for someone to blame but rather to understand more about these men and the thousands of other wild-land firefighters who routinely risk their lives to protect people and property and places with cultural or historic value. Santos covered the story for her newspaper, and then she read the official report that the multi-agency Serious Accident Investigation Team released three months later. The book, her first, shares highlights from that probe, including a detailed timeline of events. Read more.
51mCu0lY76L._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_ KJZZ's The Show: In her new book "The Fire Line: The Story of the Granite Mountain Hotshots and One of the Deadliest Days in American Firefighting," Fernanda Santos of The New York Times writes about what happened with the fire, the men who attempted to fight it and their surviving family members.
Fernanda Santos, author of "The Fire Line."

Photo by Nick Oza

Here & Now: "Fernanda Santos writes about the men who died and provides a detailed account of what happened that day in her new book, “The Fire Line: The Story of the Granite Mountain Hotshots and One of the Deadliest Days in American Firefighting.” Looking ahead following this tragedy, Santos told Here & Now’s Peter O’Dowd that unless there is a change in how we manage forests and prevent fires, more firefighters will be in danger." Read more.  
IMG_0889 courtesy Christopher mackenzieCronkite News: While they were presenting the different theories they had as to why they left the black, which was an area the fire had already burned at the top of a ridge and came down to a canyon to an area that was still covered with unburned vegetation, I became intrigued by this chain-link fence that they put around the area where they had deployed their shelters. The space was so small and I began asking myself what it was about these men that led them to stay together when they were faced with this wall of 40-, 50-foot high flames coming their way. Why is it that none of them ran? That was the question that I set out to answer when I decided to write this book. Read more.
-3126a49e03cf8a22The Oregonian: The wildfire, sparked by a lightning strike, raged for more than 10 days, scorched more than 8,400 acres and destroyed 129 buildings. Among the journalists who covered it was Fernanda Santos, The New York Times' Phoenix bureau chief. Santos' new book, "The Fire Line: The Story of the Granite Mountain Hotshots and One of the Deadliest Days in American Firefighting" (Flatiron Books, 273 pages, $25.99), focuses on the men sent to battle the blaze: Percin, squad boss Robert Caldwell, Superintendent Eric Marsh, Captain Jesse Steed and 16 more. Nineteen of the 20 Hotshots died – the worst death toll from a U.S. wildfire since 1933. Read more.
Screen Shot 2016-05-04 at 1.25.38 PMABC15: Make no mistake “The Fire Line” is not a blame game, but rather an intimate portrait of this unique crew and the dangerous, often mysterious job they loved so much. “Rest assured that between that town and the flames there are 20 men and women,” said Santos. “When you see that plane on TV I want people to think about it, these are our kids out there.” Read more.
IMG_0869 courtesy Christopher MackenzieThe Daily Courier: Each member of the crew had a role to play – a point that Santos said helped her to understand her original question: Why did they stay together, with none of the 19 trying to run to safety on his own? After getting to know the men and their roles, she said, “It made sense that they would stay together at the last moment. Everyone has a role, and I think it was pretty clear that if they were going to make it, they had to stay together.” - The Daily Courier of Prescott, Ariz., the Granite Mountain Hotshots's hometown. Read more.
Screen Shot 2016-05-03 at 12.48.31 PMCBS5: Santos covered the fire for the Times and said it’s a story she fell in love with from the beginning -- despite the horrible outcome -- because of the people involved. "I became very curious about these 19 firefighters," Santos said. "I wanted to know who they were; what kind of life did they live. Why did they fight fire? What was it about wildfires?”" Read more.
 
April 2, 2016, BOSTON - Reporter Fernanda Santos discusses how she turned her coverage of a deadly wildfire into a book at the Power of the Narrative Conference in the College of General Studies Saturday morning. Photo by Alexandra Wimley

Photo by Alexandra Wimley

Boston University: “A lot of people like to say that writing a book is like giving birth,” New York TimesPhoenix bureau chief Fernanda Santos noted during a breakout session at this past weekend’s College of Communication Power of Narrative conference. The first-time book author continued, “I’ve done both—it’s a lot easier to give birth.” Read more.