Monday, March 30, 2015

Classics Review: Nancy Drew #1

Premise: Wealthy Josiah Crowley has died, but his relatives and friends are shocked to find that he left his entire estate to the mean, already-wealthy Topham family. When Nancy learns that Josiah had promised an inheritance to many needy families, she goes searching for Mr. Crowley's hidden will.

Title: The Secret of the Old Clock
Author: Carolyn Keene
Length: 192 pages
Genre: Mystery
Series or Stand Alone: Book 1 in the long-running Nancy Drew series
Content appropriate for: Grades 3-6
Format: Hardback gifted to me by a student

Three adjectives that describe this book: simple, predictable, disappointing

I read this book as part of the Classics Club challenge to read 50 classics books in 5 years. My list is comprised entirely of children's books.

Apparently Nancy Drew books really work for lots of people. There are a great many nostalgic 5-star reviews. Now as a 30-something, this was my first time reading a Nancy Drew, and I was underwhelmed. 

Nancy comes off as a bit snobby and entitled. The supporting characters are ridiculously flat, and always single-minded. The central mystery hinged on locating a missing will, and I found myself not caring much about it. I mean, of course she'll find the will and the poor folks will get the money they've been promised. Duh. Classic, over-done scenario.

Overall, it probably only warrants 2 stars from me, but the extra star is because so many people credit Nancy with getting them started as readers.

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