Loggerhead Marinelife Center will welcome author Stacy Erin Myers to its campus for a book signing of her new work, “Jairo, The Leatherback Hero” on July 27 from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. Myers’ new conservation-themed children’s book holds appeal for readers of all ages through its magical storytelling and rich, detailed watercolor illustrations, woven with factual science. The story was inspired by the uncertain future of endangered wildlife and their habitats, putting a bright spotlight on sea turtles that swim the world’s threatened oceans. Ms. Myers wanted an environmental expert as the story’s narrator, and she chose “Traveler”, a wise old leatherback – the largest among the world’s most endangered sea turtle species.
A destined meeting of young Jairo (“Hi-Row”) and “Traveler” changes the course of their lives and, through it, helps children to understand the damage done to our oceans and its residents at mankind’s hand. Ms. Myers’ story also provides kids with a hopeful outlook and invites their participation to help protect endangered sea turtles. In Jairo, they see the difference one person, even a child, can make in the world – a world that sometimes exists in their own backyard.
This is the first book in a series by Ms. Myers to educate young readers on urgent issues facing the natural world. Vivid artwork, greater page length and word count make this a book that children will grow into as they grow up, becoming an enduring literary treasure.
Jairo lives in a small village within a lush, tropical cove, and it is where, “at a very young age, his Papa taught him how to swim.” Jairo’s love for the water and a curiosity of the mysteries below its sparkling surface turn into something very meaningful on one particularly bright, moonlit night. Jairo’s destiny begins to unfold as he witnesses, for the first time, “a real dinosaur of the deep” – an enormous leatherback sea turtle making her way back to the sea after laying her eggs in the cool night sand. Jairo’s Papa explains to him, with deep compassion, that the leatherback must be respected and protected “or one day soon they will all be gone.” Jairo’s quest comes to him in a dream that same night, thus setting into motion his extraordinary adventure and environmental awaking.
David Godfrey, executive director of Sea Turtle Conservancy in Gainesville, Florida, writes in the book’s foreword, “Stacy Erin Myers’ exquisite illustrations and beautiful storytelling will captivate young readers and grow their understanding and appreciation of sea turtles and other marine wildlife.”
Ms. Myers supports Sea Turtle Conservancy through the sales of “Jairo, The Leatherback Hero,” which was printed in the United States on certified eco-friendly paper. Loggerhead Marinelife Center will sell the book in its gift store.