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Emmi in the City: A Great Chicago Fire Survival Story
Emmi in the City: A Great Chicago Fire Survival Story
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Reviewed Titles Print Book Supported by Capstone Interactive Accelerated Reader
Girls Survive

Emmi in the City: A Great Chicago Fire Survival Story

Although Emmi has lived in Chicago for two years, she finds it hard to love her adopted city. As a German immigrant in the early 1870s, she's often teased by her America-born peers. But when the Great Fire breaks out on October 8, 1871, Emmi and her enemies find themselves braving the smoke and flames together. Can Emmi and the others survive the danger to escape the burning city? Readers can learn the real story of the Great Chicago Fire from the nonfiction back matter in this Girls Survive story. A glossary, discussion questions, and writing prompts are also provided.

GenreHistorical Fiction
Reading LevelGrades 3-5
Interest LevelGrades 3-7
Lexile Level640L
ATOS Level4.3
AR Points2
AR Quiz #199405
Text TypeLiterature: Narrative
PublisherStone Arch Books
BrandGirls Survive
Page Dimensions5 1/4" x 7 1/2"
Page Count112
BindingReinforced Library Binding
List Price: $26.65 School/Library Price

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Kirkus Reviews

"...a gripping storyline. Although all three primary characters are white, Alikhan does explore prejudices immigrants faced along with tensions between religious groups. An author's note further explains that the Great Fire had a way of equalizing everyone. Tragedy often brings unity. . . .Fast-paced intrigue, especially for reluctant readers; there may be a plethora of survival stories, but this one doesn't disappoint." - Kirkus Reviews

December 15, 2018

A Mighty Girl - Katherine

"...When the Great Fire breaks out on October 8, 1871, the divisions between people fall away as everyone struggles to survive. Can Emmi, Seamus, and Cara make their way through the flames and choking smoke and find a way to rebuild their lives afterward? This gripping story from the Girls Survive series includes backmatter with an historical overview of the Great Chicago Fire, photos, maps, a glossary, and more." - A Mighty Girl

February 28, 2021

Salima Alikhan

Salima Alikhan

Salima Alikhan has been a freelance writer and illustrator for 14 years. She loves both writing and history, so writing about the Great Chicago Fire was a perfect fit for her. She lives in Austin, Texas, where she writes and illustrates children’s books, and teaches creative writing at St. Edward’s University. Her books and art can be found online at

Go to the Author’s Page →