Read The Clue in the Old Stagecoach by Carolyn Keene Free Online
Book Title: The Clue in the Old Stagecoach|
The author of the book: Carolyn Keene
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Loaded: 2884 times
Reader ratings: 4.5
Edition: Grosset & Dunlap
Date of issue: 1960
ISBN 13: 9780448095370
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 8.55 MB
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Now I know these books aren't supposed to be Great Works of Literature, but to put it mildly, I would not start any budding Nancy Drew fan on this book. While the Old West theme is cute and the idea of towns struggling financially and having to cope with new housing developments and the problems they bring is a timely topic, the mystery itself is solved in a ridiculous way and peopled with caricatures. Two of the bad guys are pointed out right away and are so painfully obvious that they may as well wear signs with neon flashing lights indicating "BAD GUY" on them. A third is so ridiculously cartoony that I nearly sprained my eyes from rolling them so hard every time he appeared.
Also this may be more of a personal annoyance, but the three sleuths (Nancy, Bess and George [who is also a girl, in case you're not familiar with the series]) are staying at a camp in this book and seeing three guys at the camp when they already have boyfriends! And then when Nancy gets a letter from her REAL boyfriend saying "Hey, I'm going to come to the camp with Bess's and George's boyfriends," there is some discussion about what is going to happen when the two sets of guys meet up with each other, and Nancy just goes "Sometimes these situations just solve themselves." That is an extremely inappropriate message to be sending: that it's okay to cheat on your boyfriend when you're far away from him and then not take responsibility for your actions. And VERY CONVENIENTLY, just before the real boyfriends arrive, Nancy's boytoy's father takes ill suddenly and the three Camp Boyfriends (in the sense of "the boyfriends they have at camp", not the adjective) have to leave. That is not how life works! Not often, anyway. Of course Nancy and Ned could have an open relationship, but really, you have to wonder how much she actually told Camp Boy about her life back home.
And while we're on the subject of boys, it kind of undermines Nancy's brave, independent spirit when she says "It's a good thing the real boyfriends are coming, because I have a hunch that this mystery will get dangerous, and we'll need boys around to help." ARGH GIRLS ARE JUST AS CAPABLE AS BOYS. I mean fine, wanting backup is a good idea, but that is probably a job for the police and not necessarily boyfriends. Of course I have to remember that this book was originally published in 1960, and therefore even though it annoys me to read about characters saying things like that, it's important not to colour them over with modern attitudes -- it provides a glimpse into past attitudes and perspectives.
That being said, though, I don't think even a chance to talk about current affairs and older perspectives on women's independence is enough to get me to recommend this book. The mystery itself is not particularly exciting, written in a very connect-the-dots manner. There are better books in the series.
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Read information about the authorCarolyn Keene is a writer pen name that was used by many different people- both men and women- over the years. The company that was the creator of the Nancy Drew series, the Stratemeyer Syndicate, hired a variety of writers. For Nancy Drew, the writers used the pseudonym Carolyn Keene to assure anonymity of the creator.
Edna and Harriet Stratemeyer inherited the company from their father Edward Stratemeyer. Edna contributed 10 plot outlines before passing the reins to her sister Harriet. It was Mildred Benson (aka: Mildred A. Wirt), who breathed such a feisty spirit into Nancy's character. Mildred wrote 23 of the original 30 Nancy Drew Mystery Stories®, including the first three. It was her characterization that helped make Nancy an instant hit. The Stratemeyer Syndicate's devotion to the series over the years under the reins of Harriet Stratemeyer Adams helped to keep the series alive and on store shelves for each succeeding generation of girls and boys. In 1959, Harriet, along with several writers, began a 25-year project to revise the earlier Carolyn Keene novels. The Nancy Drew books were condensed, racial stereotypes were removed, and the language was updated. In a few cases, outdated plots were completely rewritten.
Other writers of Nancy Drew volumes include Harriet herself, she wrote most of the series after Mildred quit writing for the Syndicate and in 1959 began a revision of the first 34 texts. The role of the writer of "Carolyn Keene" passed temporarily to Walter Karig who wrote three novels during the Great Depression. Also contributing to Nancy Drew's prolific existence were Leslie McFarlane, James Duncan Lawrence, Nancy Axelrod, Priscilla Doll, Charles Strong, Alma Sasse, Wilhelmina Rankin, George Waller Jr., and Margaret Scherf.
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