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Children's Nonfiction Environmental Science & Ecosystems


Wildlife at the Ends of the Earth

by (author) L.E. Carmichael

illustrated by Byron Eggenschwiler

Kids Can Press
Initial publish date
May 2023
Environmental Science & Ecosystems, General, General
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    May 2023
    List Price

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Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 7 to 11
  • Grade: 2 to 6
  • Reading age: 7 to 11


From the author of the critically acclaimed The Boreal Forest, a stunning exploration of the animals that have adapted to survive in Earth's harsh polar regions.

The Arctic and Antarctica, at opposite ends of the Earth, have much in common: bitter cold, ferocious winds and darkness lasting six months. Despite these harsh conditions, many animals have adapted to stay alive in the polar regions. This evocative and beautifully illustrated book from the award-winning team of author L. E. Carmichael and illustrator Byron Eggenschwiler explores how animals at opposite ends of the Earth survive using similar adaptations. There's the arctic fox who is protected from the ice by the fur on the soles of her feet, the emperor penguins huddling in groups around their chicks to keep everyone warm, and the narwhal using echolocation to find a crack in the surface ice to breathe. It's a fascinating journey through a year in the polar regions, where animals don't just survive - they thrive!

Each spread in the book is devoted to a month and includes a themed introduction and two stories on opposites pages, one about an animal in the Arctic and one about an animal in Antarctica. Extra spreads cover topics such as seasons, winter weather and types of ice. The book concludes with a timely description of the disruptions that climate change is causing to the polar regions, and how this will have global consequences. A glossary, further reading, author's sources, an index and ideas for what children can do to help are included. There are strong life science curriculum applications here in animal habitats and animal adaptation, migration, hibernation and cooperation.

About the authors

L. E. Carmichael is the author of more than twenty informational books for children, many of them about animals and the natural wonders of our planet. She is the winner of the Lane Anderson Award, which recognizes excellence in science writing for kids, and of the Governor General's Academic Medal for her PhD thesis about northern wolves and arctic foxes. She lives with her family in Trenton, Ontario.

L.E. Carmichael's profile page

Byron Eggenschwiler is an award-winning illustrator whose recent books include The Little Ghost Who Was a Quilt by Riel Nason, Operatic by Kyo Maclear (starred reviews from Booklist, School Library Journal and Quill & Quire), Coyote Tales by Thomas King and Beastly Puzzles by Rachel Poliquin (starred review from School Library Journal). Byron’s work has also appeared in the New Yorker, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Walrus, GQ and O, The Oprah Magazine. He lives in Calgary, Alberta.

Byron Eggenschwiler's profile page

Editorial Reviews

A fascinating introduction to the world's largest biome.—School Library Journal (Praise for The Boreal Forest)

An informative introduction to the boreal forest.—Booklist (Praise for The Boreal Forest)

Excellent for the natural history and science shelves.—Kirkus Reviews, starred review (Praise for The Boreal Forest)

Carmichael's often lyrical text engages the reader and perfectly captures the setting while Eggenschwiler's illustration style and his use of murky blues, teals and golden-browns not only suit the text but have a nostalgic feel, harkening back to the illustration style of the past.—CM Magazine

First-rate from top to bottom.—Kirkus Reviews, starred review

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