A Story of Fire and Nature

August 2023
More details
  • Publisher
    CSIRO Publishing
  • Published
    2nd August 2023
  • ISBN 9781486315444
  • Language English
  • Pages 32 pp.
  • Size 9.84" x 9.84"
  • Images color illus throughout

Fire is a natural part of the Australian bush. This is a story about that relationship – fire that breathes life back into nature.

Alight shares the story of Australian native plants and animals during a planned fire. Discover how the fire helps Christmas Bells grow new flowers and Wallum Banksia to open its woody seed capsules. Follow Antechinus and a tiny Wallum Sedge Frog as they face the danger of the fire – and the challenges that come after. See how the bush recovers and flourishes after the fire, all under the watch of Old Eucalypt.

With engaging text by Sam Lloyd, and stunning illustrations by Samantha Metcalfe, Alight is a gentle exploration of the importance and benefits of healthy fire in the bush.

Reading level varies from child to child, but we recommend this book for ages 6 to 9.


  • Explores how planned fire is a necessary element in the fire-prone ecosystems of the Australian bush.
  • Shows how different species of plants and animals respond to fire and can benefit from post-fire conditions.
  • Illustrates how tiny animals can survive fire and how fire can trigger flower production, seed release and germination in plants.
  • Demonstrates the challenges animals and plants can also face in the post-fire environment.

Sam Lloyd

Dr. Sam Lloyd is a scientist, fire ecologist and writer with a passion for the Australian bush and children’s literature. Through storytelling, art, and a love of books, Sam strives to engage children in the world of science and nature. Sam lives in Brisbane with her husband, children, dog, and some chooks.

Samantha Metcalfe

Samantha Metcalfe is a Natural History Illustrator who finds inspiration in the unique biodiversity of the Australian bush. Working primarily in color pencil, her realistic and detailed illustrations often focus on capturing Australia’s native flora and fauna. Samantha has illustrated several children’s picture books including The Voyage of Whale and Calf, and she was also shortlisted for the 2019 Children’s Book Council of Australia Award for New Illustrator.

fire ecology; Australian bush; planned burning