By Sherry Shameer Cohen
Anyone who went to a Jewish sleep-away camp has some vivid memories, but former hedge fund manager Elliot Sloyer of Stamford is turning his into a series of books for kids ages 5 and up. The founder of Harbor Capital Management, a convertible arbitrage firm, Sloyer is the author of two camp-themed books: The Safety Pin and the recently released Bat in the Bunk.
An active member of the Stamford Jewish community, Sloyer’s books are intended to appeal to all kids, but they have special meaning for Jewish families living in Greater Stamford, because he sprinkles them with references to some of the city’s prominent Jewish residents — such as Dr. Hesh Romanowitz z”l, who appears as the camp doctor, and Walter Schuchatowitz, founder of Stamford’s Bi-Cultural Day School. Sloyer’s wife, Diane, is executive director of the Jewish Federation of Rockland County in New York.
It was while biking across the nation with his son that Sloyer came up with the idea of creating a series of books based on his experiences at Camp Massad in Tannersville, Penn. – a popular Jewish sleep-away camp that boasts such notable alumni as Alan Dershowitz, Joseph Telushkin, Ralph Lauren, and Rabbi Haskel Lookstein. Sloyer plans to continue the series.
Although Sloyer is a relative newbie as a children’s book author, he is a natural storyteller who infuses his books with cleverly placed sayings to teach children values both Jewish and universal. To bring the written words to life, the books are filled with vivid graphics by award-winning illustrator Vic Guiza.
Both The Safety Pin and Bats in the Bunk are compliant with the Common Core State Standards for public schools throughout most of the country. Feedback from educators has been positive thus far, with Northeast Elementary School media specialist and book buyer Debbie Gerber describing The Safety Pin as a book that is “bright, cheery and funny.”
To order Elliot Sloyer’s camp books, visit: EverythingSummerCamp.com and Amazon.com.
Sherry Shameer Cohen is an award-winning journalist, copywriter and theater critic who lives in Stamford.
CAP: Elliot Sloyer officially released his book, Bat in the Bunk, at Elm Street Books during the 96th anniversary of Children’s Book Week held May 4-10.