We have a huge storm thundering outside as I write this, and I am wondering if the power will last until I get this posted. If if doesn't, I have only myself to blame - I should have written this a couple of days ago, but no, I procrastinated and now look. Which just goes to show you should always listen to your mother.
Remember Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys? Trixie Belden? The Three Investigators?
My oldest recently discovered mysteries and isn't too interested in reading any other genre right now (except a break for Harry Potter, which could be considered a kind of mystery, I suppose.) Sure, she's been checking mysteries out at her school library, but oh, do I have some old favorites I can't wait to share with her!
Our bookshelves hold a few copies of Nancy Drew that I picked up at yard sales (the old hardbacks with the yellow spines.) She hasn't noticed those yet, but I plan to direct her attention that way, and pick up a few more if she's interested. The iconic girl detective has been around since the 1930s and is still going strong. I've reread the copies on my shelves, and I like how strong and independent Nancy is. I think she'll be a good role model for my daughter, which is always a good thing. As a kid, I always wanted to join Bess and George as one of Nancy's sidekicks.
I don't have any of The Hardy Boys, so I've been looking around for a few. I discovered them a couple of years after I read my first Nancy Drew. Back then, I always viewed them as the male version of Nancy, made up so that the boys would have something to read. It wasn't until I was an adult that I learned that the two sons of Detective Fenton Hardy had been around since 1927. (Not that I ever cared if they were written for boys. They were just as much fun as Nancy Drew and besides - I had such a crush on Joe Hardy!)
Somebody gave me a Trixie Belden (The Gatehouse Mystery) at some point. It's the only one I've ever read. Something about a huge diamond and poison ivy. Strawberries and giant mosquitoes were in there somewhere, too, as I recall. It was very exciting, although I remember her friend Honey was rather annoying. Too, too girly, and not as adventurous as Trixie. I think I'll give my daughter some of those if I happen to run across any, but I don't feel inclined to go chasing them down.
Alfred Hitchcock and The Three Investigators were a later find. My junior high school library had a huge collection of those, and I tore through them. Jupiter Jones, Pete Crenshaw and Bob Andrews were set up in business by Alfred Hitchcock. They had the greatest secret hideout, in the middle of junk yard, only accessible through a secret path. They had a limousine at their disposal! And I think they had cool gadgets, too. I've got a couple of those already, and I wouldn't mind checking out the local used books store for more. Heck, who cares if she wants to read them? I think I want to reread them!
What were your favorite mystery series when you were a kid? Are there any great characters I missed? Let me know!
Series: Nancy Drew, by Carolyn Keene
The Hardy Boys, by Franklin W. Dixon
Trixie Belden, by Kathryn Kenny
The Three Investigators, by Robert Arthur, Jr.