Life finally seems good to sixteen-year-old Dayle. No longer a self-conscious bookworm, she's captured the attention of Keith, the perfect dream boyfriend. Her worries are the same as those of most teens her age. She wants to stay friends with her long-time best friend Amy while pursuing the excitement of her relationship with Keith. At the same time, she has to fend off the embarrassing overtures of another friend Stu, and tend to her schoolwork and the usual demands of family. But suddenly Dayle's world turns inside out when a moment of carelessness causes tragedy. She is badly burned, and one of her friends is gravely injured. Stage by stage and day by day, Dayle endures, drawing strength from her family and friends and sustained by the memory of a strong and loving grandmother. Out of the Fire follows Dayle's despair and triumph as she learns painfully that her own resources go much deeper than appearances.
Between the Lines
Deborah finished writing Out of the Fire while caring for her three sons – including a six week old infant. “I wrote late at night while my kids slept,’” she says. “Exhaustion worked to my benefit; it unleashed a kind of unencumbered creativity.”
Writing Out of the Fire was a plot-intensive process. It involved a chart that coordinated various aspects of psychological, emotional and physical healing with story action.
The story rang true for people who had experienced traumatic burn injury. "A young burn survivor and her mother and a woman involved in medical treatment for burn survivors found the story so realistic that they thought I must have been a burn survivor too."
Out of the Fire was published in German by Beltz and Gelberg as In meiner haut in 2004, translated by Birgitt Kollmann.
Chosen for the American Library Association’s list of the Best Books for Young Adults, 2003. One of 11 books out of 203 nominations to receive unanimous vote from the ALA’s Young Adult Library Services Association Committee.
Manitoba Young Readers' Choice Award (MYRCA) 2003 Honour Certificate
Short listed for the Canadian Library Association (CLA) Young Adult Canadian Book Award
Nominated for the McNally Robinson Book for Young People Award
One of six nominees for the Deutschen Jugendliteraturpreis 2005 (In meiner Haut, German translation)
Froese has created believable teen characters and placed them in a difficult situation, building tension and story. A good read, full of intense soul-searching, romance, and mature characters. School Library Journal.
Dayle is a sympathetic, well drawn heroine whose suffering and growth keep the reader turning pages. Canadian Review of Materials.
Deborah Froese... created a little masterpiece with her very first novel… (it) is absolutely convincing. (Translated from German.) General Anzeiger, Journal Bonn.
Highest recommendation. (Translated from German.) LiteraTour.