Table of Contents
Is someone after Cam and Eric?
Cam walked ahead. Then she stopped. She held out her hand and Eric stopped, too. She put her finger in front of her mouth so that he would be quiet. They listened. They heard the sounds of coins and keys jingling. Someone was walking behind them and was getting closer.
“What should we do?” Eric asked.
Cam looked across the backyard. It was surrounded by a metal fence.
Cam whispered, “Let’s run around the back of the house to the other side and then out.”
Cam and Eric started to run. Whoever was following them started to run, too.
“Stop! Stop running right now!” someone called out.
The Cam Jansen Adventure. Series
#1 Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the Stolen Diamonds
#2 Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the U.F.O.
#3 Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the Dinosaur Bones
#4 Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the Television Dog
#5 Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the Gold Coins
#6 Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the Babe Ruth Baseball
#7 Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the Circus Clown
#8 Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the Monster Movie
#9 Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the Carnival Prize
#10 Cam Jansen and the Mystery at the Monkey House
#11 Cam Jansen and the Mystery of the Stolen Corn Popper
#12 Cam Jansen and the Mystery of Flight 54
#13 Cam Jansen and the Mystery at the Haunted House
#14 Cam Jansen and the Chocolate Fudge Mystery
#15 Cam Jansen and the Triceratops Pops Mystery
#16 Cam Jansen and the Ghostly Mystery
#17 Cam Jansen and the Scary Snake Mystery
#18 Cam Jansen and the Catnapping Mystery
#19 Cam Jansen and the Barking Treasure Mystery
#20 Cam Jansen and the Birthday Mystery
#21 Cam Jansen and the School Play Mystery
#22 Cam Jansen and the First Day of School Mystery
#23 Cam Jansen and the Tennis Trophy Mystery
#24 Cam Jansen and the Snowy Day Mystery
DON’T FORGET ABOUT THE YOUNG CAM JANSEN
SERIES FOR YOUNGER READERS!
To my nephew Donnie,
who inspired my very first book,
and to his lovely bride, Aliza
Published by Penguin Group
Penguin Young Readers Group,
345 Hudson Street, New York, New York 10014, U.S.A.
Penguin Books Ltd, 80 Strand, London WC2R ORL, England
Penguin Books Australia Ltd, 250 Camberwell Road, Camberwell, Victoria 3124, Australia
Penguin Books Canada Ltd, 10 Alcorn Avenue, Toronto, Ontario, Canada M4V 3B2
Penguin Books (N.Z.) Ltd, 182-190 Wairau Road, Auckland 10, New Zealand
First published in the United States of America by Viking,
a division of Penguin Books USA Inc., 1993
Published by Puffin Books, a division of Penguin Books USA Inc., 1995
Reissued, 1999, 2004
Text copyright © David A. Adler, 1993
Illustrations copyright © Susanna Natti, 1993
All rights reserved
eISBN : 978-1-101-07611-8
[1. Mystery and detective stories.] I. Natti, Susanna, ill. II. Title. III. Series: Adler, David
A. Cam Jansen adventure; 14.
PZ7.A2615Caae 1993 [Fic]—dc20 93-18622 CIP AC
am Jansen’s father looked up. He was sitting in his car and reading a mystery novel. He was also waiting for Cam and her friend Eric Shelton. They were selling chocolate fudge bars and rice cakes to raise money for a local charity.
Mr. Jansen saw Eric look at a sheet of paper.
He’s trying again,
Mr. Jansen thought. I
hope this time he can remember his speech.
Eric Shelton put the paper in his pocket. Then he turned to Cam and said, “Good morning or afternoon. We’re here to ... to ... to ... Oh, I can’t remember what to say.”
Cam said, “Let me try.”
Cam put the shopping bag she was carrying on the sidewalk. She took a chocolate bar and a rice cake from the bag. Then she closed her eyes and said,
Cam smiled. With her eyes still closed, she said, “Good afternoon. We’re here to raise money for Ride and Read. We bring homebound elderly people to our local library. By buying this chocolate fudge bar or this rice cake, you will help us with our work.”
Cam opened her eyes.
“You got every word right,” Eric said. “I’ve been studying and studying that speech and I still can’t remember it. How long did it take you to memorize it?”
“I looked at it once, blinked my eyes and said
and I knew it.”
Cam has what people call a photographic memory. She remembers just about everything she sees. It’s as if she has photographs stored in her brain. Cam says
is the sound her mental camera makes when it takes a picture.
Cam’s real name is Jennifer Jansen. When she was very young, people called her “Red” because she has red hair. But when they found out about her amazing memory, they began calling her “The Camera.” Soon “The Camera” was shortened to “Cam.”
Cam and Eric walked up the front path of a small brick house. There was a large broom next to the front door. Eric moved it aside and rang the doorbell. An old woman with curly white hair, wearing a long, frilly apron, came out.
“Good afternoon,” Cam said. “We’re here to raise money—”
“Good afternoon,” the woman answered.
Cam started her speech again. “Good afternoon. We’re here to raise money for Ride and Read.”
“That’s wonderful,” the woman said. “Ride and Read is a fine program. Sometimes they take my husband to the library.
Now, don’t say another word. I want my husband to meet you.”
Then she called, “Jacob. Jacob!” Her husband, an old man with rosy cheeks and a bushy white mustache, came to the door.
The woman introduced her husband and herself to Cam and Eric. “This is Mr. Jacob Miller and I’m Mrs. Janet Miller.”
“My name is Jennifer Jansen,” Cam said, “and this is my friend, Eric Shelton.”
The woman told her husband, “These children are raising money for Ride and Read.”
“Good afternoon,” Cam said. Then she waited. She expected to be interrupted again. When Mrs. Miller didn’t say anything, Cam went on.
When Cam had finished her speech, Mr. Miller smiled. “What you’re doing is nice, but I don’t eat candy and I’ve never tasted a rice cake.”
“What about me?” Mrs. Miller asked. “I love chocolate. And anyway, it’s for charity. We’ll take two of each.”
Eric gave her the chocolate fudge bars and rice cakes. Mrs. Miller paid Eric. He put the money in an envelope.
As Cam and Eric went to the next house, Eric said, “That was easy.”
A man and woman were running toward them. They were looking straight ahead and swinging their arms as they ran.
“Let me talk this time,” Eric said. “I think I can remember what to say.”
Eric took a chocolate bar and a rice cake from the shopping bag. When the runners were a few steps away, Eric smiled and said, “Good afternoon. We’re here to raise money ...”
The runners didn’t stop.
“Hm,” Eric said. Then he pointed to a woman who was walking along the side of the yellow house next door. She was wearing a long blue raincoat and dark glasses. She was carrying a large, filled, black plastic bag. When she reached the sidewalk, she turned and walked quickly toward Cam and Eric.
“Good afternoon,” Eric said. “We’re here to raise money ...”
The woman didn’t look at Eric. She just kept on walking.
“Hm,” Eric said again.
Cam looked straight at the woman. Just as she was about to walk past, Cam blinked her eyes and said,
“Those people were rude,” Eric said. “Didn’t they know I was talking to them?”
Cam kept watching the woman. Then she whispered to Eric, “That woman is hiding something. She’s wearing dark glasses and it isn’t sunny out. She’s wearing a raincoat and it’s not raining. There’s something in that bag that shouldn’t be there. Let’s follow her.”