Night of the Burning Tents- Book Review

 “A vivid account of one of the most shameful events in American labor history, told by the children who lived through it”

This is an account of The Ludlow Massacre as seen through 12-year-old Katie Scully. When her father is killed in a mining accident, she dresses as a boy to work as a coal breaker. Just as she gets accustomed to this rough, harsh world and begins to get her family out of their dire financial situation, a strike is called.

Rosetti tells this important history through fictional characters and some of the real people of the events. She does a masterful job of showing the terrible events without dwelling on them enough to scare a younger reader. Yet the author does not shy away from tragedy. In fact, it is told as the main character would see it. Terrible, but a fact of life in these tragic times.

I enjoyed the relationships Katie develops as she lives in a tent city in the winter. We should all know more about The Ludlow Massacre, and Rosetti takes us to the place where we should study it from. Amongst the people trying to survive and battling a world against them.

I bought Rosetti’s first book as a way to support a local authors. I bought others, including this one, because she tells great stories.