Sheri Miller’s literary tribute to her mother, Linda Miller, begins characteristically with a poem by the elder Miller. Titled Living Jade, she writes: “Millions of jade jewels rustling in the breeze/Sparkling in the sunlight are the leaves of the trees.


Their movement as they sway/Outlining the sky/Makes life worth living/Just for their sheer beauty. The trunk like a pillar/The branches like arms/STILL/Then reaching, reaching/According to the caprice of the wind. But each leaf, a precious artifact in its own right/Like a jewel, adorning the beauty of life.” It’s only fitting for a book about environmentalism, even more so one targeted at educating young children. It’s both Miller women’s hope that education on climatism, environmentalism, and recycling will help pave the way for a better future, particularly given the convictions of the elder Miller – who was a life-long educator.

The result is Honoring Our Planet! THINK!. Selflessly, Sheri, who is an accomplished music star herself, credits her mother – Linda – as the sole author of the work on the cover. It’s clear from BTS materials Sheri saw herself merely as the arbiter of her mother’s passion, crafting something that can live forever in her name and with her values. The book’s best performative element is how it simply asks the reader questions – introducing key concepts in conversational, affable fashion.

“What if global warming changed our Planet Earth as we know it? THINK!” reads the first ‘lightbulb’ blurb in the picture book, showcasing a contrast between wildlife grazing in a field, then an evocative, impressionistic portrait of said field aflame. Or, for instance, “What if the frozen icebergs melted into the great waters of our ocean? THINK!”, showing two penguins staring in puzzlement as the environment around them crumbles into the arctic waters.

Then, the slow and masterful of implementations one can take. For instance, blurbs changing tonally into the following: “If temperatures rise above1.5 degrees Celsius, will Planet Earth be able to provide its delicious, vibrant foods which energize us with life? THINK!”, “How can we honor Planet Earth? We can take responsibility and lovingly care for our fertile land, clean fresh air and beautiful oceans. THINK!”, or “We can plant magnificent trees which absorb carbon dioxide and preserve the ozone layer. We can be creative and discover fun new ways to recycle items! THINK!”


Think, indeed. By teaching children (and adults, particularly those raising them) to dream this way, that is how we move culture. That is how we change the current game. That is how we pave the way, with the right thinking and the right leaders, to a better future. The synopsis on the back of the book perfectly encapsulates this, along with the overall nobility of both Millers’ intentions. “We honor and celebrate our magnificent Planet Earth, with great love, by making conscious choices and happily appreciating our natural resources. Let’s discover inspired solutions, opening a world of fun, exciting possibilities! You have the power and the gift to create positive change within yourself and the world. You can do it!”

Jason Hillenburg