Karen Taylor may be just 12 years old, but she's old enough to know it's time for her to grow up and play a part in shaping her world. There are dangerous forces at work out there, forces she is just beginning to understand, and they are threatening the people and places she loves. When she meets a man working with a surveyor to map out a section of the woods, she stumbles into a secret plan to build a large industrial plant. The new plant has serious implications for Karen and her town, and for a rare salamander that lives nearby. The mayor and the developer are determined to build their plant and will roll over any obstacle to do it. Karen also wants the plant to be built but in a way that lets everyone benefit. She will even risk her own home to make it happen. But the forces of business as usual are very strong. What can a 12-year-old girl do to make it all work out?