Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the U.F.O. by David Adler

23 Mar

David Adler’s series surrounding a girl with a photographic nicknamed Cam are intriguing stories for ages 7-10. In terms of literary offerings, they are slim, but when trying to motivate students to read this series is a great to have in the primary school library. The story begins with Cam and her friend Eric Shelton discussing the upcoming Junior Photography Contest. Mysterious bright light are seen off in the distance and leave it to Cam and Eric to discover what the eerie lights are. In the end, the mystery is solved and Eric goes on to receive honorable mention in the photography contest. This story is recommended with reservations, but this series is truly a big hit with younger readers.

Insight:

If I were reading this book for me, boring, boring and more boring. Luckily for this title, selecting books for my library means putting the wants and needs of library patrons first. Will most kids like this series? Probably. Are there better books out there? For sure. As long as children are reading these books and loving them…consider having them in your collection and not just a single copy, but at least two of each. This series goes super fast in our school library and students always ask for more.

Suggested Library Activity:

Using a Venn Diagram have students compare and contrast the differences and similarities between Eric and Cam.  Be sure to use adjectives in the lesson and also discuss how adjectives make characters come to life.

Bibliographic Citation:

Adler, D. (1980). Cam jansen and the mystery of the u.f.o. New York. Viking Press.

Additional Book Review:

Horn Book (Spring 2001)

“Each volume contains two previously published Cam Jansen stories bound together. These formulaic, mild mysteries describe how Cam and her friend Eric solve problems using moxie and Cam’s never-fail photographic memory. Early chapter-book readers may appreciate the stories, which are illustrated with black-and-white line drawings.”


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