CM . . . . Volume XVI Number 21. . . .February 5, 2010.
I Saw It Too! Real UFO Sightings.
Chris A. Rutkowski. Illustrated by Stacey Archer with Lonigan Gilbert.
Toronto, ON: Dundurn Press, 2009.
180 pp., pbk., $14.99.
Unidentified flying objects-Sightings and encounters-Juvenile literature.
Human-alien encounters-Juvenile literature.
Grades 3-5 / Ages 8-10.
Review by Thomas F. Chambers.
As they watched, the objects stopped their movements and reversed direction, passing each other in what seemed to be playful “dogfights.” The strange craft continued these odd maneuvers throughout the day, and the women watched off and on as the afternoon passed. By about 2.00 p.m., Mrs. Morrissette left to go to the market in town, and only paused briefly to look over at the silver things in the sky.
I Saw It Too! Real UFO Sightings contains 18 stories, from numerous countries, about the sighting of UFOs. They were originally told by children and are rewritten here from other sources. Each averages nine pages and is illustrated with an imaginative black and white sketch. In addition, each chapter lists the source for the story and ends with “Questions a Ufologist Would Ask.” There is also a bibliography. I Saw It Too! is suitable for recreational reading.
Author Chris Rutkowski created a dialogue between the children in the chapters. This makes the stories more realistic and, as a result, if used as classroom support, each chapter could become a short one-act play.
Fact or fiction? We will never know, and the witnesses to the sightings in I Saw It Too! weren’t sure themselves what they saw. None of the stories is the same, though some are similar. It does seem, from what they reported, that they saw space ships and, sometimes, strange alien creatures. No one, especially the adults who were soon consulted, had a rational explanation. There were so many witnesses of these strange events that they can’t all have been just figments of children’s vivid imaginations. Skeptical readers will, of course, surmise many other causes.
The end-of-chapter questions are interesting and challenging. Answering them could turn out to be an exciting and entertaining experience. They will make children think about whether the “sightings” were real or imaginary. They should also provoke questions and discussion aplenty in return, thereby making the book more useful.
Chris Rutkowski is a science writer with a great interest in astronomy. Prior to this book, he wrote A World of UFOs, Abductions and Aliens and The Canadian UFO Report. He is described by his publisher as a ufologist, and it is doubtful if many people know more about the subject.
Thomas F. Chambers, a retired college teacher, lives in North Bay, ON.
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