Camilla Chameleon

Overview

Camilla is a little strange-looking. But she's one talented ? girl. She can pick up a hopscotch rock without even bending over. She can look at her teacher with one eye and read a comic book with the other. And, best of all, she can blend in perfectly with her surroundings -- so that no one, not even her parents, can tell she's there. Camouflaging sure comes in handy when it's time for her to go to the doctor or clean out the class hamster cage for her teacher. But one day Camilla blows her cover ? and finds ...
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Overview

Camilla is a little strange-looking. But she's one talented ? girl. She can pick up a hopscotch rock without even bending over. She can look at her teacher with one eye and read a comic book with the other. And, best of all, she can blend in perfectly with her surroundings -- so that no one, not even her parents, can tell she's there. Camouflaging sure comes in handy when it's time for her to go to the doctor or clean out the class hamster cage for her teacher. But one day Camilla blows her cover ? and finds herself in the spotlight. Colleen Sydor's spirited story and Pascale Constantin's brilliantly quirky illustrations bring to life a wonderfully weird girl who discovers that standing out isn't so bad after all.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
The art is vibrant and original ? a fresh story.

The exaggerated, quirky artwork’s the real star here in scene after scene, where bug-eyed, blonde pony-tailed Camilla is cleverly camouflaged in the various backgrounds.

Children's Literature - Beverley Fahey
It seems as if Mrs. McNilly's penchant for Cream of Chameleon soup during her pregnancy has had a strange effect on her bouncing baby girl, Camilla. Camilla blends in quite literally. As she grows it is a feat that comes in handy when visiting the doctor or on the nights when liver and onions with fried cabbage is on the menu. At school Camilla becomes one with the blackboard, causing her teacher to become quite flummoxed. It is because Camilla so loves Fizzy Fizzy Make Ya Dizzy Rootin' Tootn' Root Beer that an enormous belch finally reveals the embarrassed girl. Instead of punishment, Mrs. Floxbottom marches Camilla straight to the drama department where she is the perfect helper for dumbstruck actors who have forgotten their lines. Not long after, the McNilly's have a bouncing baby boy named Terry who has a strange resemblance to a pterodactyl, the result it would appear of one too many cans of Cream of Pterodactyl soup. The story is silly and downright quirky but not without appeal. Kids will giggle at Camilla's ability to disappear and may secretly wish they had the power of camouflage. They will feel quite smug when they can see Camilla on the ledge of the chalkboard while her teacher searches frantically for her. The whimsical oil paintings are a perfect match for the story that bears a bit of the bizarre and the weird but is quite clever and amusing.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2-The humorous and slightly bizarre McNilly family jumps right off the pages in this delightful romp. During her pregnancy, Milly eats Cream of Chameleon soup for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. When baby Camilla arrives, she has the characteristics of a chameleon-obvious to readers but not to her parents or teacher. She camouflages herself whenever she wants to avoid things, like liver and onions or assignments at school. The plot gets even wackier when Milly starts eating Cream of Pterodactyl soup, and soon Camilla has a brother. Terry looks just like a pterodactyl, but his parents think he is perfect, just like Camilla. The art is vibrant and original, showing Camilla morphing into other colors. A fresh story about an unusual child who gets into some bizarre situations.-JoAnn Jonas, Chula Vista Public Library, San Diego, CA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
When Mrs. McNilly was pregnant, she craved Cream of Chameleon soup; when daughter Camilla is born, she's strange looking and her parents often have trouble finding her. At school, her incredible hide-and-seek talent makes her popular, as does her ability to look straight at the teacher with one eye, while reading a comic with the other, and to use her very long tongue to retrieve hopscotch markers. Other times, her "blending" skills get her into trouble. At the school play, her knack as an invisible cue prompter is a big help. Nevertheless, at the curtain call, she discovers that she likes "standing out" even better. The exaggerated, quirky artwork's the real star here in scene after scene, where bug-eyed, blonde pony-tailed Camilla is cleverly camouflaged in the various backgrounds. Look out, though, Mrs. McNilly is pregnant again and craving Cream of Pterodactyl. Kids will love the silly fun and the opportunity to forecast other sibling soup possibilities. (Picture book. 5-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781554531646
  • Publisher: Kids Can Press, Limited
  • Publication date: 8/28/2007
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: 840L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 10.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Colleen Sydor lives in Winnipeg, Manitoba, with her family. She is the author of Camilla Chameleon and Raising a Little Stink. My Mother is a French Fry is her first novel for young adults.

Pascale Constantin has illustrated many children's books in Canada and the United States. The two books that she created for Kids Can Press, Camilla Chameleon and Raising a Little Stink are among her favorites. She lives in Montreal, Quebec.

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