Cam Jansen #1: The Mystery of the Stolen Diamonds

by David A Adler

Paperback, 1992



Local notes

R Adl






Scholastic (1992), Paperback, 58 pages


A fifth-grader with a photographic memory and her friend Eric help solve the mystery of the stolen diamonds.


Original publication date


Physical description

58 p.; 7.4 inches

User reviews

LibraryThing member stharp
A very predictable realistic fiction. This book, a mystery would probably be good for young readers in first or second grade. The theme of the book was stuck to pretty well, but with a few deviations for development of the series information.
LibraryThing member emgriff
Cam Janson and her friend Eric are babysitting at the mall when they hear the jewelry store alarm sound and see a suspicious-looking man dashing toward the exit. But is he the real thief? Using their sleuthing skills and Cam's photographic memory, the friends are determined to track down the
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missing jewels. An easy to read, early chapter book, this story uses basic vocabularly, a fast-paced plot and black and white illustrations to keep the reader engaged. Limited characters avoid confusion on the part of early readers, but also make it evident very early on who the culprits must be. The end of the book, in which Cam finds herself confronting the criminals in their hideout, just isn't very convincing. To his credit, the author creates characters who deviate from traditional gender roles. Cam is the leader and the one with a very technical skill, while her friend Eric is knowledgable about children and cares for his little brother. While the plotline may be predictable to an adult reader, I do think many elementary school children (2nd - 4th grade) would enjoy figuring out the mystery and reading other the books in this series.
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LibraryThing member bsturdevant06
This is closest to being realistic fiction. They are normal kids with in a normal shopping mall. Robberies really do happen. The thing that is usual and almost fantasy like is Cam's memory. The plot of this story has a good resolution with them catchment the robbers and returning to the
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Media: ink
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LibraryThing member msequeira06
Genre: I think this story is on the boarder line of fantasy and realistic fiction. Cam Jansen has a photographic memory which she uses to help the police find a thief (which photographic memories can be realistic) however, the extent to which her memory worked is exaggerated and almost fantasy.
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Other than this, the characters and plot are relatively realistic.
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LibraryThing member scadd07
This early chapter book is a realistic fiction or a mystery book. I love mysteries, and this would be perfect for early readers and will get them more excited about reading! This would be for early/intermediate readers. The characterization in this book was great. Cam was a dynamic protagonist and
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was easy to like. She has a photographic memory and a fun personality. She saved the day by solving who stole the diamonds from a local jewelry store.
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LibraryThing member Yona
I must recommend these and see how well they're received. I read two of them (and will copy this to the other) and I thought the concept of the main character in a children's mystery having a photographic memory was very cool. And Cam was a great character too. The writing seemed to instill
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excitement and a sense of such activity that made the story fun.
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LibraryThing member AMaffett
This book would be great for problem and problem resolution as they try to find the jewels.
LibraryThing member nicholew
I love this series. These books are a great way to introduce mystery to children. I love how Cam using the term "click" to store something to memory, I think this is a good think to teach children that using a term or action can help them remember something important.
LibraryThing member rjayne2
I think the big message about this story is to not steal. I liked this story because the writing is very simple which is something that I could see myself giving my students as a book to read. Another reason I liked this story was because of the characters. I like how Cam had the photographic
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LibraryThing member ejoy13
This book is about two friends who after seeing a jewelry store robbed, decide to help solve the crime. Cam, one of the main characters, has a photographic memory. She uses this tool to remember the characters and what took place at the store. The two friends then follow a man out of the mall and
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embark on an adventure, eventually saving the day.
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LibraryThing member BethWal94
This realistic fiction children's chapter book was about a young girl who has a photographic memory. In this book, her and her friend Eric were sitting at the mall with Eric's little brother, Howie. While they were sitting there, the Jewelry store behind them was being robbed. Because of Cam's
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photographic memory, she took mental pictures of the different people running out of the store. She took one of a man who everyone thought was the culprit. Everyone told the police who he was an which direction he went. She also took one of a young couple who came out of the store. After the police caught the suspect, they realized that it was not the right man, and they let him go. Cam and Eric followed him because they notcied that they went in the same direction of the young couple. When they followed him, they found the young couple and him in a house together. Eric ran back to the mall to get the police, while Cam stayed with Howie. When an acorn dropped and scared Howie, he started crying, which made the young couple and the man hear Cam. They took her inside and held her captive. When they were dividing out the diamonds they stole, Cam plotted a trick against them. They were confused and were searching the whole house for her, even though she was in the same room the whole time. When she was looking out the window, she saw a policeman. He helped her get out of the window and the other policemen captured the fugitives. Cam and Eric were heroes!
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LibraryThing member ecarlson2014
This chapter book is a modern fantasy literature text. It tells the story of two friends, Cam and Eric, as they witness a crime and try to solve the mystery. They're sitting outside a jewelry store, when a man comes rushing out and the alarm starts blaring. Cam uses her photographic memory to help
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find the jewelry thief.
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LibraryThing member sarahetuemmler
Formal book review:
This book is about a girl and how she tries to solve the mystery of stolen diamonds.
This girl Cam loves to solve mysteries and is up for the adventure of catching the crook who robbed a local jewelry store. Cam knows the police do not have the right man so she takes it upon
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herself to find the crook.
My favorite part of this book is how courageous Cam is to solve the mystery. She does not give up and this is a connection to everyday life. Courage is something everyone should have and this book shows a good lesson of how courageous one little girl can be.
I recommend this book for anyone who likes mysteries and all the interesting clews and steps that are involved in solving them. This book is simple enough for Elementary aged students about grades 3-5. It is an early chapter book so the student has to be able to read at a higher level.
Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the Stolen Diamonds will surely have you wanting to read another mystery!
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LibraryThing member Sarah.Lew
Once again, I love mystery books, so give me a whole stack of these, and you will never see me not reading. This book will really inspire the sleuth in some readers. I would use these books as a way to set up lessons about problem solving. The class could even come up with their own mystery that
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another class would have to try to solve. This book is appropriate for second through fifth grade.
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LibraryThing member jhunt6
In the first book in the Cam Jansen series, Cam Jansen uses her photographic memory to catch the unidentified diamond thief. I liked this book for three reasons. First, the plot creates a taste of suspense for young readers. It is not too intense to scare the children, but it makes them want to
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turn the page to find out what happens next. For example, “…but he’s going in the other direction. And its the same way the couple went. Something strange is going on. Come on let’s follow him!” This excerpt is at the end of a chapter and it makes the audience want to read the next chapter to get some answers to their questions. Next, I liked the characters of the book because they are believable, but at the same time do extraordinary things that are not relatable to an average 9 year old. This makes the book more engaging because the adventures the characters embark on are exciting and new. For example, Cam and Eric follow the suspect through allies and to an abandon house. Many 9 year olds are not allowed out of their parents sight or do not have the courage to follow a criminal. Therefore, the students get to live through the character. Lastly, the descriptive language constructs lively characters and a great setting. For example, “Cam sat down on the bench. She ran her fingers through her hair. Cam had what people called bright red hair even though it was more oran than red. Eric’s hair was dark brown.” Many could argue that this sentence is not necessary, however, if you read between the lines, the language describes the difference between Eric and Cam. This is important in how the characters interact with each other and how their personalities form. I would recommend this book to any young reader who may view reading as a chore or homework because it will keep them well engaged.
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LibraryThing member NMiller22
A fifth-grader with a photographic memory and her friend Eric help solve the mystery of the stolen diamonds. Book #1
LibraryThing member AbigailAdams26
When Cam Jansen - real name Jennifer, but nicknamed "The Camera" for her photographic memory - and her best friend Eric Shelton witness the aftermath of a jewelry robbery at the mall in this beginning chapter-book, the pair soon realize that the police have made a mistake. With Eric's baby brother
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Howie in tow, they set out to track down the diamond thieves themselves...

Well this was a trip down memory lane! I used to read the Cam Jansen mystery series as a young girl, but hadn't picked one up in years. The Mystery of the Stolen Diamonds is one I recall particularly enjoying, and rereading it today on my train commute, as part of a project to familiarize myself with more titles intended for this beginning chapter-book stage, I was filled with nostalgic happiness. First published in 1980, some of the developments seem a little unlikely in 2019, especially carrying little Howie along while confronting jewel thieves. Still, I don't think that this bothered me at all as a young reader, so perhaps today's children will be likewise unconcerned. Recommended to mystery fans who are just getting going with chapter-books.
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½ (78 ratings; 3.5)
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