Okay, here is another chance for me to go to Mystery Reader Hell – I am not a fan of the original Nancy Drew mysteries. They are obviously popular based on how many are sold each year but I found them old-fashioned and out-of-date. The Hardy Boys were a little better, but not much. That being said, I love the Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys characters. I enjoyed the TV shows and the movies. I just wished I could get through the books.
One day while browsing the library I found the newest Nancy Drew series and to my complete joy she works with the Hardy Boys. The series is called the Nancy Drew: Girl Detective and Hardy Boys: Undercover Brothers Super Mystery. They used modern gadgets and cell phones and travel all over the world solving crime. Awesome.
Who are Carolyn Keene and Frank Dixon?
Carolyn Keene is a pseudonym used by anyone who writes the Nancy Drew books. The original series was created by Edward Stratemeyer. He created over 150 book series including Nancy Drew, the Hardy Boys, the Bobbsey Twins, and many others. Even though he thought up all these characters he did not write the books. He hired ghost writers to write the books under pen names. Over ten authors have written Nancy Drew novels under the name of Carolyn Keene.
The Hardy Boys stories are also written under a pseudonym. Several people have written under the name Franklin W. Dixon through the years.
I think this is an amazing concept. Imagine never getting credit for writing one of the most popular series of all times. They must really love writing for the sake of writing.
I do not know who actually writes this new Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys series but I bet it is just one author working on each book. That means that person is both Carolyn Keene and Franklin W. Dixon. Too bad they can’t put it on their resume.
Why do I love this book?
I love middle grade mysteries. They focus on the story and leave out all the character angst. Despite my dislike of the original books I really do like Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys. Now that there is a series featuring them all set in the twenty-first century I am willing to read these books. They do not disappoint. The writing is not amazing but the characters are true to their origins and the mysteries are both intriguing and exciting. The sleuths find themselves in hot water time and time again. These books made me like Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys even more.
No book is perfect. This is what bugs me…
The only thing that bugs me is that the books are so hard to find in online catalogs. The reason for this is that there are a ton of Nancy Drew and Hardy Boy mysteries and they all have similar names. There is a super mystery set that was written in the 1991 and some of the titles are almost identical. I wanted to read all the books in the series written in 2010 and had a hard time doing so. I wish someone would write a new Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys series and call it something besides “Super”. How about “Ultimate”, or “Mega”, or “All New”? I know they are super-sleuths but the word super has been overused.
Why should you read this book?
If you liked Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys as a kid these you’ll enjoy spending more time with these super sleuths. If like me, you thought the original Nancy Drew books were old-fashioned you’ll love the new updated version of these wonderful characters, complete with cell phones. If you are looking for a kid-friendly mystery for the middle grader in your life this series would be a great choice.
A Quote worth Quoting
“Canya dew any bett’r?” said Frank. Listening to him, I had to admit I was impressed. His Irish accent was impossible to understand. That afternoon we spent watching and rewatching the Commitments had paid off. Franklin W. Dixon Stage Fright