Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Nancy Drew Girl Detective: Framed #15

I just read the latest Nancy Drew: Girl Detective book, Framed, #15 and had a few comments. For those of you just tuning in, this is the main Nancy Drew series in print. The original series--Nancy Drew Mystery Stories--ended with #175 in Nov. 2003. This new Girl Detective series replaced it in 2004 starting over at #1 and the biggest change was that Nancy speaks to the reader in first person.

I thought the first person concept was great at first since it would allow a reader to get inside Nancy's head as she solves a mystery and goes through life's little moments. Now, I'm not so sure at times that I'd rather have it in 3rd person where Nancy might remain a little more of a mystery to the reader. I go back and forth on this one.

I enjoyed this mystery overall, quick read. But at times, it seemed like Hannah was made to be too bossy. And snippy with this comment to Nancy after she called Nancy to the phone: "I hope my piecrust didn't burn while I was waiting for you." (pg. 2)

In the originals, Chief McGinnis was much more of an equal to Nancy and there was mutual help and respect. I realize that this was deemed to be not very realistic, so it made sense at first that making them more of rivals in the new series and her more of a pest to the police might seem more realistic. But, given the fact that River Heights is not a huge town, a place where everyone knows everyone else, it's not so far of a stretch that she would be held more in esteem with the police department. There was a comment in the book that people in River Heights didn't think Chief McGinnis could find his way out of a paper bag when it came to crime solving. To me, that's taking this reality concept a bit far with his being characterized as so bumbling. It's just very at odds with classic Nancy Drew.

I often wonder what kids think when they read some of the classic books which are still in print--1-56 in those glossy yellow spines which are still very popular sellers apparently, when they pick up one of these new books and see such a contrast in the characterization. I think most kids are smart enough to pick up on the differences.

I half way wished Bess would run off with the prince and become princess Bess!

Overall it was a fun read, typical of this series, but I do wish we could have more suspense, villain foibles and peril for our dear heroine like in the classics--these were tried and true formula hits that kept the series popular for years.

What is everyone's impression of the Girl Detective series so far?



Tenacious L said...

True, the Girl Detective series is not the same as the classic series, but I like reading them all the same. I like the changes, such as Bess still feminine but also a mechanic whiz. I like how there are more recurring characters like Harold Safer. Sometimes the humor in the books have me in hysterics. I can't wait until the next one #16 comes out, and I also hope this series will go on for a while, so I have a current series to collect, because I was out of the ND loop until last year!

kevindenis said...

I thought this book had some definite echoes to the classic series. The series, which has had its ups and downs, is getting better book by book. Nancy isn't portrayed nearly as absent-minded as she was in the early books, which is a plus. I'm still on the fence about the first person narration. I still think S&S could request the books be longer. Other popular series books are 200 pages and longer so why not Nancy Drew too?

Tiffany said...

I think the stories are great for young girls.

However, I still don't like the relationship between Chief McGinnis and Nancy. I also think there should be less emphasis on Deirdre's mission to break Ned and Nancy up. I'm still behind on reading so hopefully they will get a little better.

Love the site and blog,

Sandra said...

You wanted to know what kids think of the books and I--being a 12 year--old think I can help. I love the hardcovers because in it Nancy is a great rolemodel, being very polite and intelligent. I also enjoy how the plots are very well thought out. The thing I don't like, though is how you already know who the culprit is and your trying to find them. In the new Nancy Drew Girl Detective There are many things I like and dislike. The things I like are: 1. How the books are short because they give you a 'breather' from longer books and 2. How characters reappear. The things I dislike are: 1. Chief McGinnis and Nancy. I wish their friendship was how it used to be in the hardcovers and 2. The first person concept. I loved it at the beginning but as I got to the 8th book it started getting annoying and confusing. Anyway I hope that this comment was useful to you. ;)

Ashlee said...

i think that the books are o.k. i agree that the hardbacks are good but i like the 1st person...Framed #15 was not the greatest of the books as well as The Orchid Theif. i do think that they are making hannah bossey and cheif m. is not so nice, i like Bess being smart yet feminine and george still being good at tech, and nancy not being so distracted but i think that they are making bess and george a little bit overdramatic in Pit Of Vipers about her car!

kilala said...

I think nancy drew is gr8! she is a role model 4 kidz n teenz! Keep on bein cool Nancy!!!!

Sabrin said...

I think Nancy's great too! At a very young age i started enjoying these books, and I still do! YOu can get tons of info on Nancy at Wikipedia. Go Nancy!