Review Detail

Riveting look at Roswell
(Updated: November 22, 2022)
Overall rating
Writing Style
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)
Learning Value
We all know about Roswell... or so we think. What really happened back in the 1940s, and how did this purported crash help give rise to the alien sightings of the 1950s and the interest in all manner of paranormal creatures in the 1970s and 80s? Fleming, whose Curse of the Mummy is the best overview of Howard Carter's archaeological dig at Tutankhamen's tomb I've read, does an excellent job of laying out all of the various events related to this one small crash, and the long, long trail of influence that these events, and their interpretations had!

After reading this, I got into a discussion with a friend who loves to read books that debunk various sketchy beliefs, and Fleming managed to hit every topic that my friend brought up! I loved that there were plenty of primary source photographs, documents, and drawings that really brought the scope of the beliefs in extraterrestrials into clear focus. Readers who think that there really were aliens that crashed at Roswell need this book... mainly because it neatly debunks just about everything without making the reader seem silly for believing in the first place.
Good Points
The formatting is perfect, and while the book is a little on the long side, it's a good choice to have in a middle school library for readers who want to take a deep dive into the history of aliens in US culture in the last 80 years. Unfortunately, I don't believe in anything (even though I grew up in the age of Bigfoot sightings, concerns over the Bermuda Triangle, and Leonard Nimoy's riveting television show "In Search Of"!), so I always dismiss things like aliens, ghosts, and cursed places without giving them too much thought. But my friend with whom I had the conversation about this book? Totally ready to pick this one up to see if there is any new information.
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