A Warmer World book cover image

A Warmer World

  • 795

By: Caroline Arnold / Illustrated by: Jamie Hogan

From Polar Bears to Butterflies, How Climate Change Affects Wildlife

The golden toad used to inhabit the cloud forests of Costa Rica, but when the weather became too warm and dried up the pools where its eggs hatched, the golden toad disappeared. It has not been seen in more than twenty years. This amphibian is just one of several species in A WARMER WORLD, a thought-provoking and informative account of how global climate change has affected wildlife over the past several decades.

Species by species, acclaimed nonfiction children's author Caroline Arnold describes how warmer weather alters ecosystems, forcing animals to adapt or become extinct. Arnold's clear and straightforward text is complemented by Jamie Hogan's collage-style illustrations. Reminiscent of a nature journal, the book will inspire readers to start their own research into this significant global issue.

A glossary and listing of websites and books for further exploration is included.

Look Inside the Book:

Author & Illustrator Bios:

Caroline Arnold, author

Caroline Arnold grew up in Minneapolis, Minnesota and spent her summers at a small camp in northern Wisconsin. It was there that she developed her love of animals and the outdoors, delighting in catching sight of deer leaping through the underbrush or a porcupine scrambling up a pine tree.

Read more about Caroline.

Jamie Hogan, illustrator

Jamie Hogan grew up in the White Mountains of New Hampshire and graduated from Rhode Island School of Design with a BFA in Illustration. She began her freelance career in Boston, with work appearing frequently in the Boston Globe. She taught editorial illustration at the Art Institute of Boston and became active in the Graphic Artists Guild. Her illustrations have been included in American Illustration, PRINT Magazine, Graphis, and the Society of Illustrators.

Read more about Jamie.

Awards & Honors:

  • A Junior Library Guild Selection
  • NSTA/CBC Outstanding Science Trade Books for Students K-!2
  • California Collection, elementary
  • Bank Street College of Education's Best Children's Books of the Year

Editorial Reviews:

Publishers Weekly

Arnold explores global warming by focusing on how it directly affects several species and their habitats. Some animals, like Edith's checkerspot butterfly, are forced to migrate north because temperatures in southern areas have become too warm for the plants that they require for survival. Polar bears have less time to hunt as a result of earlier spring melts, and walruses are left with fewer and fewer floating ice chunks to use as "platforms" while at sea. Hogan handsomely portrays the animals using charcoal pencil and pastel. Arnold doesn't sugarcoat the potential effects of climate change, plainly stating that the "loss in biodiversity could be devastating."


With clear explanations and bright, handsome collage artwork, this picture book packs in a lot about the effects of global warming on particular animals and the connections between them. Even small changes in temperature can produce big changes in animals' chances for survival, and up to one million species could be threatened with extinction as the planet heats up. As global temperatures rise, the warmer water is destroying coral reefs and many coral species are becoming extinct, while creatures in higher zones have nowhere to go to find cooler places. Many yellow bellied marmots, for example, have starved because they hibernate less in a warmer climate and cannot find the plants they normally eat. At the same time, some creatures do benefit because they can move to habitats that were previously too cold. The visual details bring the concepts close, from images of a butterfly in flight or the final view of an arctic fox with a factory belching black smoke in the background. A glossary and suggested resources conclude.

NSTA Recommends

Caroline Arnold's book is ideal for young readers learning about climate change for the first time. The book is filled with concrete examples of the effects of climate on familiar animals and habitats. It is filled with information about foxes, pocket mice, polar bears, walruses, penguins, krill, coral reefs, fish, and others.

This book describes how our world is warming. The changes affect food chains, shifting populations of predators and prey. As animals are forced from their normal habitats, they are adapting to these new habitats or facing extinction. These concrete examples make this complex topic more accessible to this grade level.

This is a thought-provoking book with extremely rich illustrations. I would recommend this book to the young reader. In addition to the beautifully colored pages, a glossary is included along with a few websites and books that contain additional information for those interested. This book would make a great addition to the elementary teacher's library.

School Library Journal

A warmer world is the new reality for many animals and plants, and how they are reacting to climbing temperatures is the focus of this short, informative work. Arnold looks at the devastating impact of melting ice on polar bears and at the broadening range of Edith's checkerspot butterflies, to name a couple of examples. The speed of this change is leaving many species unable to adapt, and as many as a million species are feared to face extinction. A few might actually benefit from a wider habitable range, but often at a cost to other species. Combining general information on rising seas, melting ice caps, and warmer water with specific emphasis on individual animals such as loggerhead turtles, marmots, penguins, and walruses, this book offers students the opportunity to examine a natural world in flux. The soft-focus pastel drawings and collages add to the sobriety of the message. Valuable for classroom discussions of the environment and the consequences of continued and unabated global warming.

Library Media Connection

This book investigates the effects of global warming and the devastation it leaves behind. Muted acrylics depict animals in their habitats and provide a model for grasping the true concept of a world trying to keep up with climate changes and, ultimately, the disappearance of many animal species. The final page poses a gripping thought, "...[Our world] is warming so quickly that scientists worry plants and animals will not have time to adapt." Content is comprehensive and requires an advanced reader, however, the information provided is engaging and is accompanied by factual scientific accounts. Young readers who are concerned about their environment will certainly want to read this book.


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ISBN: 978-1-58089-267-4

ISBN: 978-1-60734-087-4 PDF
For information about purchasing E-books, click here.

Ages: 7-10
Page count: 32
7 x 10

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Ocean Soup
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