In the face of climate change, we need two kinds of courage: the courage to act in ways that reverse or minimize damage and the courage that comes from knowing how to survive extremes if needed. This factual book for readers ages 9 - 12 considers both aspects, especially the courage that comes from having survival skills.

Readers get to explore the most demanding conditions humans can face: in the Arctic Circle, the Depths of the Ocean, the Amazon Rainforest, the Australian Outback, Outer Space, and more. Each of 12 sections provides things to remember, facts about human and other inhabitants, survival tips, and ways to help the environment — for instance, by eating less beef to help stop deforestation in the Amazon that's making room for new cattle ranches. The array of information equips readers with a sense of agency: When faced with extreme difficulties, here are things I can do to protect myself and the environment.

Many ideas shared here prove useful anywhere. In the section on the Alps, readers learn how to make their own trail mix, and the Antarctica section explains that if you're concerned about a companion being too cold, look out for "the 'umbles,' which is when someone starts mumbling, stumbling, fumbling, or grumbling!"

Biographical sketches of people who have survived in extreme conditions emphasize qualities like ingenuity and affinity with nature. One Iñupiaq woman featured, Ada Blackjack, arrived at age 23 on an ice-cold Russian island to help with an expedition. The other members of the expedition died, leaving only Ada and her cat, Victoria, to survive alone. "She set traps to catch foxes, learned how to shoot birds, and even made a small boat from animal skins." A rescue ship arrived two years later, finding Ada and Victoria alive.

Author Ben Lerwill has been a freelance travel writer for more than 15 years, with works appearing in international publications ranging from The Sunday Times to National Geographic Traveler. Illustrator Daniel Long's dynamic pictures add to the adventuresome spirit of this book, which concludes with ideas for making the future your own.