I usually avoid movies or novels about firefighting or firefighters, they never measure up. I don’t watch “Rescue Me” on FX because the main character has long hair. I am not down on long hair but this guy’s hair does not conform in any way with firefighter standards — cut your damn hair!
“One Foot In The Black” is as close to real as anything I have read. Kurt Kamm brings us the story of a young man from the Mid West that travels to California to work the summer fire season. Later he catches on with L.A. County where he is formally baptized by fire.
The main character Greg is haunted by a troubled past, mostly at the hand of a firefighter father who is no parental role model.
Author Kamm lives in Malibu California so he has first hand experience with the atmosphere of fire from the victims end. He acknowledges numerous active and retired L.A. County and Cal Fire firefighters for technical guidance with his research.
The highest compliment I can offer an author is to say I could not put the book down. Once “Greg” gets into the soup I found myself turning pages. It’s pretty rare when terminology, tactics, terrain and narrative match so well.