Ocean’s End: Travels Through Endangered Seas

The Black Sea has already experienced a devastating ecological collapse. Because of sea-level rise, an entire nation in the South Pacific, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, is being washed away. Throughout the Caribbean Sea, vast stretches of coral reef-called the “rainforests of the ocean” because of their diversity of life-are dying at increasingly rapid rates. The reefs along the entire north coast of Jamaica are dead. The penguins of the Antarctic Peninsula are being sucked dry by ticks, which now survive the winter. Ocean’s End is not about the damage our oceans could suffer (and inflict) in ten or a hundred years, if we’re not careful. It’s an eyewitness account, in compelling and vivid detail, of the massive worldwide destruction that’s already happened, and a call to change course for our own sakes as well as that of the seas.

“Part travelogue and part ecology lesson… an informed, balanced, and constructive account…”

— Foreign Affairs


“[This] chronicle of Colin Woodard’s travels through the world’s marine disaster zones, aims for the emotional clarity of the anecdotal with a chillingly microscopic account of just how our various follies have come about… Woodard is a tremendous reporter – anyone doing Web searches on environmental problems will repeatedly come across his articles from a variety of newspapers. And he is a strong, impassioned writer as well.”

Bill McKibben, Boston Sunday Globe

“This is a very disturbing book—and it’s meant to be. Journalist Woodard gives us a wake-up call that our oceans are in trouble and that we have to act now if we are to save them and ourselves from destruction….Woodard has done his part by writing the book. Our first job is to get the book (and others like it) into our libraries and then into the hands and minds of our patrons.”

Library Journal (starred review)

“Let’s get right to the point of this review. Everyone who lives near, works or plays on an ocean should read Ocean’s End. Heck, everybody who breathes should read it! Ocean’s End is a riveting page turner…Not all travel books are about pleasant treks through Provence or Tuscany. This one, however, is more important to read than all the others combined.”

“If current literature on water were to be collected and canonized, this book would be the equivalent of Jeremiah….a passionate, powerful travelogue…”

Dallas Morning News

“Ocean’s End is a wake-up call for those who see the watery part of the world as the final terrestrial frontier…a book that every sailor should read.”


“Woodard’s quietly passionate and focused presentation leaves little doubt about the gravity of the water world’s ecological crisis.”

Kirkus Reviews