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Young Adult Fiction Mysteries & Detective Stories

Trial by Fire

A Riley Donovan mystery

by (author) Norah McClintock

Orca Book Publishers
Initial publish date
Apr 2016
Mysteries & Detective Stories, Country Life, Prejudice & Racism
Recommended Age
12 to 18
Recommended Grade
8 to 12
Recommended Reading age
12 to 18
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2016
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Apr 2016
    List Price

Classroom Resources

Where to buy it


Riley Donovan is the new kid in a small town where her aunt (and guardian) has just started a job as a detective on the town’s police force.

Riley is home alone when a neighbor’s barn catches on fire; when she realizes that he is trapped in the barn, she calls 9-1-1 and then tries to save him. But instead of being hailed as a hero, Riley finds herself the target of vandalism and violence. Never one to back away from a confrontation, Riley discovers that her neighbor, Mr. Goran is an immigrant from Kurdistan who is hated by most of the townspeople. When he is accused of arson, Riley is positive he’s innocent. In her determination to get to the truth, she makes some powerful enemies, uncovers the depth of the town’s prejudice and corruption, and figures out who is targeting Mr. Goran—and why.

About the author


Norah McClintock est l’auteure de plus de 40 livres, dont ceux des collections Chloe & Levesque, Mike & Riel et Robyn Hunter Mysteries, tous publiés chez Scholastic Canada. Les livres de Norah ont été traduits dans une douzaine de langues. Elle a remporté le prix Arthur Ellis dans la catégorie du meilleur roman policier jeunesse et beaucoup d’autres récompenses. Native de Montréal, Norah a obtenu un baccalauréat en histoire de l’Université McGill. Une mer de chagrin est son premier roman historique. «Il est temps d’utiliser toutes ces connaissances en histoire», a-t-elle dit. Norah vit maintenant à Toronto.


Norah McClintock is the author of Tell and Snitch, both Orca Soundings novels. Norah lives in Toronto, Ontario.

Norah McClintock's profile page


  • Short-listed, Arthur Ellis Awards for Excellence in Canadian Crime Writing—Best YA
  • Commended, CCBC Best Books for Kids & Teens

Editorial Reviews

"A solid mystery with social overtones."

Kirkus Reviews

“This tightly plotted page-turner is another solid entry in the series. Riley Donovan is a strong-minded, sensible and personable teen with whom readers will identify and cheer on. Highly Recommended.”

CM Magazine

"The fast-paced plot will make this a satisfying read for fans of crime fiction...A solid young adult crime novel."

VOYA Magazine

"Another winning entry in [McClintock's] string of YA mystery novels...[The author] captures the essence of small town life with its biases towards all outsiders...Riley prevails as an appealing attractive and effective teenage sleuth."

Resource Links

"An action-packed mystery that will keep any reader on the edge of his or her seat...highly recommended."

School Library Connection

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