In 1894, the town of Hinckley, Minnesota was forever changed by a rampaging fire that struck without warning. Marlo Schalesky weaves a compelling and moving story around that tragic historical event, with tenderness and lyrical artistry.
Josef, Ellie, Lars and Arla’s lives take a twist they never thought possible when the Hinckley conflagration consumes buildings, stock and people indiscriminately. Fear, pain, hope and love all rise up from the ashes as they wonder how to move on. God’s faithfulness and protection is called into question by some, while others cling to their faith in the face of such tragedy.
As the community attempts to restore their lives, another is hoping a dark and sinister secret has been laid to rest underneath the blackened landscape.
The impact of Veil of Fire is lasting and heartfelt. That the fire actually took place, killing 418 people in four hours, contributes to the book’s punch but no less is Marlo’s beautiful abilities as a wordsmith. She has crafted a tale that engages the heart with her appealing and compelling characters and activates the mind with a mystery that remains satisfyingly unresolved until the final chapter. I was so impressed with this novel that I have nominated it for my book club to read later this year!