The summer of 2003 - B.C.'s summer of fire - will be remembered as one ofthe most destructive fire seasons in Canadian history. The fires burned through 264,472 hectares of forest, parkland, and built-up areas in the Shuswap, Okanagan Valley, and most devastatingly, in the city of Kelowna. The property lost included 334 homes, ten businesses, and twelve historic railway trestles. Three pilots died while fighting the fires. It was the first time in ten years that anyone had died fighting a fire in British Columbia. But as bad as the numbers are, they tell only a part of the story. In this book more than 60 people, including frontline firefighters and evacuees, share their most poignant memories of that summer. There are gripping accounts from firefighters like Don Blair, who describes his brush with death when his water truck wouldn't start in the face of a rapidly advancing fire. Scott Horovatin reveals the terrifying moment when he thought he was trapped and called home to say goodbye to his wife and baby. The fires were wildly unpredictable, often jumping over buildings or changing directions without notice. Residents soaked their properties and chopped down nearby bushes and trees in a desperate attempt to save their homes. They all tell their stories with uncommon candour to two reporters who had first-hand experience of the events described. The stories in this book are about heroes, loss, and camaraderie among friends and strangers. They are about finding out what's really important in our lives.