Reading Nancy Drew

With the ‘lazy days of’ summer waning, I have been making some time for myself.  I can always find myself doing other things that need to be done like house cleaning, gardening, grass cutting, or computer work.   In fact, I could do that constantly if I don’t force myself to do something relaxing.  Once I decided to take a break, it didn’t take long to remember those innocent days of my childhood summers and reading Nancy Drew Mystery stories.

My sister Betty got me interested in reading Nancy Drew – in fact, in reading, period.  Before then, I was an outdoor girl, always climbing trees or hiking or basically living outside when not in school.  Betty is two years older than me and had already a collection of several N. Drew (as we still affectionately call them) books.  One boring day, she threw one at me while I was lounging on my parent’s bed.  I clearly remember studying the hard cover of The Secret of Red Gate Farm, even reading the back cover with interest.  Then I slowly opened the book in true dramatic fashion – well that’s how I remember it anyway.   I couldn’t put it down until I was finished reading it!  The rest is history.


The Nancy Drew books were written by Carolyn Keene, who was actually a series of ghostwriters over the years.  The first mystery story was The Secret of the Old Clock published in 1930.  I have a first edition copy of that treasured favourite along with several other first editions.  Today, there are new (and different) Nancy Drew mysteries for young audiences but I LOVE reading the old classic books – the first 45 mysteries.  I love how I’m swept away to another time when life was simpler, except for Miss Nancy Drew.

Both Betty and I bought hard cover Nancy Drew books while we were teenagers.  I know I continued to purchase them even after I grew up, married, and left home.  There was one book, out of print by then, that I was missing to complete our collection of original books but I found it at our local second hand book store.  Actually the owner had taken my name and the specific book I was looking for and when it came in a year later, she called me.

When Betty’s daughter Brodie was a teen, all the books I had were sent to her to read.  Then when my daughter Kristi was a teen, all the books came back to me where they have remained lovingly tucked on the top 3 shelves of my bookshelf.

First Editions Collection

First Editions Collection

This summer, I wandered downstairs on a mission to choose a N. Drew book to read.  I thought I would be able to leisurely spread the reading over a week, but alas, I was swept up in the mystery story and finished reading it a few hours later.  Now I have a few Nancy Drew books on the table beside me so I can read whenever the mood strikes me.  I know why I like these books because the print is larger than most paperbacks and the paper is heavier.  It’s easier on my eyes.   AND because 50 years has passed since I read my first N. Drew story, I can’t remember how they turned out so it’s like reading them for the first time!

I have to admit, I STILL love reading Nancy Drew books.  I have to thank my sister Bet for lending me her first books to read and starting me on a lifetime path of reading.  And yes, Betty, they are still YOUR books!  lol

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