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About the book

Bernie’s Escape from Ong Island is an exciting adventure starring Bernie, a beloved puggle (half-pug, half-beagle, 100% awesome) from Austin, Texas. Bernie and his human, Sammy, are taken on a journey to an exotic trash wasteland where their lives are turned upside down. Will Bernie, Sammy, and their new friends find a way home? Will they ever be free of the island and its polluted pitfalls?


Join Bernie and Sammy on this wild ocean adventure as they discover the truth about the dangers of pollution and how it impacts the world’s wildlife. A portion of all profits from Bernie’s Escape from Ong Island will be donated to organizations devoted to the cleanup of the ocean, reusing plastics found in our environment, and promoting a circular economy.

Available at



Coming Soon... Eco-friendly Bernie Merchandise!

Lesson Plan

FREE lesson plan for teachers (or parents) to use in the classroom!

Music Video

Check out our music video. Song by Ken Johnson.


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About the Author

Harris Family

Jessica Harris (formerly Vogel) has over ten years of experience in energy efficiency with a background in mechanical engineering, project management, construction administration, and extensive experience with utility energy incentive programs. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from New Jersey Institute of Technology and is now the proud owner and President of Harris Energy Solutions, a Women Business Owned Entity headquartered in Austin, Texas.


Jessica is also the proud mother of two children. She relocated to the Austin area with her husband from New Jersey. When she’s not working or writing, Jessica enjoys working out, spending time with her family, and hiking.


Jessica has a passion for protecting the environment and is currently working on a children’s book series to educate and encourage action addressing the dangers of plastics in the ocean, deforestation, and pesticide pollution. Bernie’s Escape from Ong Island is her first children’s book.

Help Bernie save the environment


Try to purchase goods you really need—everything from clothes to toys.
For example, on average, a piece of clothing will only be worn seven times before it is thrown away. Let’s break the fast fashion cycle by only buying what we need and loving what we have! Bernie treasures his treats, chew toys, and stylish dog shirts even more now.


When something breaks, try to fix it instead of running out for another expensive alternative.
You can also shop secondhand and even sell some of the things you don’t need anymore to others. Bernie gave his extra tennis ball to a neighbor dog in exchange for a bone the dog was tired of playing with.


Spend time researching what your local area offers regarding recycling programs. See how you can help further the cause! If there isn’t a recycling program nearby, start your own! Bernie and Sammy convinced their whole street to start separating recycled products out of their trash after describing their escape from Ong island.


Make lifestyle changes to benefit Bernie’s less-is-more plan! Act by becoming involved in your local government, agencies, and other organizations that stand behind environmentally conscious efforts. Sammy’s mother and father have been telling their work friends to make an impact with their wallets. If everyone stopped buying single use plastics, then large corporations would be forced to make more energy conscious alternatives.

Environmentally Friendly Corner

Jessica Harris participated in Read Local Author Readings with the Round Rock Public Library in May. The authors who presented their books were DA Featherling, Marcia Spillers, Jessica Harris, Keith R. Rees, and EB Staples!  To watch the presentation, follow this link: https://fb.watch/61QUeU_Hsb/.  (Jessica Harris’......

This past Saturday was World Environment Day. Since 1974, every year on June 5th World Environment Day has been celebrated. This day focuses on engaging governments, businesses, and citizens in an effort to address pressing environmental issues. This year, the host was Pakistan.    Scientists......

The Women in Sustainability Leadership Awards (WSLA) honors leadership in sustainability and recognizes women who are driven, dedicated, and determined to fight for the environment, social justice, and equity. The WSLA Alumnae Group includes over 85 of the most influential women trailblazers who have become......

Sunscreen is an important part of protecting ourselves during the summer. However, a lot of sunscreens have chemicals that can harm marine life. These chemicals are:  Oxybenzone  Benzophenone-1 Benzophenone-8 OD-PABA 4-Methylbenzylidene camphor 3-Benzylidene camphor nano-Titanium dioxide nano-Zinc oxide Octinoxate Octocrylene When you put on sunscreen,......

Check out Bernie’s Tips to have a sustainable summer! Throwback to our list of reusable product swaps!  Bernie’s list of plastic swaps Find or host local clean-up events Even if it is just you, your family, and some of your friends picking up trash while......

Confetti is a fun and aesthetic addition to parties, celebrations, and photoshoots. However, most confetti is made out of plastic materials and pollutes the environment. Could you imagine how long it would take to pick up every single piece of confetti thrown before the wind......

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    Bernie's Escape from Ong Island Cover