Mathes started fighting wildfires in 1997 in north Idaho. His book takes readers from his terrifying start as a wildland firefighter to becoming part of a team of seasoned crew members. He writes about the bureaucracy of the fire service, living on the fire line and the life - and death - of friends on the fire.
The book is a look at Mathes' start in fighting wildfires in 1997. It follows him through his early career and his time as a seasoned veteran.
Mathes says he wanted to write the book, in part, for his buddies on the fire line.
“We throw around the word ‘hero’ a lot, but these are just hardworking folks who just wanted to do a good job, do something good for the community, for the land, pay their way for college or support their families.”
Mathes left Idaho in 2012 for a full-time job in California. When he’s not writing about fire, he writes about being a single dad. His novella, “Still Life,” won the Meadow Prize earlier this year.
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