Nothing dazzling--just a straightforward account of the Great Fire of 1666, which began in a baker's house and spread, because of previous drought and increasing wind, to level virtually all of the old City of London. Charles II is on hand to supervise first the quenching, then--less satisfactorily--the cleaning up, Christopher Wren makes suggestions for rebuilding, Pepys records what he sees. The author takes note of the improvised Court of Fire Judges established to deal with property and personal suits, calls it ""one of the most revolutionary legal concepts in English law since, in effect, it negated all previous law."" And he does not neglect foreign complications which furthered fears of conspiracy. Fire proof-correct, and the illustrations have vitality and veracity.