After a fire, you might think a burned area is as barren and lifeless as the moon. But take a closer look and you'll find that even before the last wisps of smoke have cleared, the newly burned forest is already teeming with life. Many plants and animals find fertile ground here to grow, eat, and have offspring; some species are dependent on fire and cannot thrive or reproduce without it. Unlike most books, which concentrate on the fire itself, The Charcoal Forest explores the new habitat created by the fire. Focusing on the Northern Rocky Mountains of the United States and Canada, the book describes twenty species of animals and plants that contribute to the reclamation and renewal of the charcoal forest. Why do some beetles fly toward a fire? Why will you almost never see a black-backed woodpecker outside of burned areas? How do fires help grow yummy treats like huckleberries and morel mushrooms? Kids and adults will delight in discovering the answers to these and other burning questions--and don't forget to find the black-backed woodpecker in every picture!