Sunday Book Talk: Nancy Drew.


The What What on Nancy Drew.

I have had a very nostalgic summer, it may be that soon after it ends I will turn thirty-five. Whatever the case I have been yearning to re-read some childhood favorites again like The Black Stallion Series and Nancy Drew. Sort of like when I crave Macaroni & Cheese on a Tuesday. Comfort connectons to childhood.

Nancy Drew is one I have seen largely put together collections in antique stores here and there over the years but of course I’ve never had the right time nor the right money just then. But I am hoping to one day begin a collection, or recollection of them. I’d be proud to one day have much shelf space dedicated to those yellow hardcopy spines in my sophisticated adult library.
I remember much of my exploring by mind as I read through copy after copy as a little girl and often much of my outdoor exploring influenced by these pages. Even now when I explore some abandoned location or dark secret cave in my travels or as I spent time among the historic buildings of Galveston Island my mind would tickle with the feeling I would have then when reading these books, as if some mystery were soon to be solved.

If I were one to have them, the series is one I would be sure to supply my own children with. In the sooner than later future I plan to do so for my nieces and nephews. I might just die a little inside if they didn’t love the books I did as a child.

The Nancy Drew series is a unique book series in a lot of ways. It’s creation and long running stance one that can be appreciated in the world of books. In a time when even comic books were new but eventually time would show, written by several authors over a long period of time and creating a cult following. Nancy Drew was one to show that it could hold it’s stance through time. Manly with the little girls, it also showed many young girls that there was another window, if not many, open to them in the exploration of life and what a woman can be when she grows up, not constricting to societies standards. And as society changed over the years, Nancy Drew upheld that she could hold her own from past to current times, a time of publication that spans my entire own life into adulthood even, my mothers entire life and even partially my grandmothers.

The book has changed publishers over the years as well as writers and editors and even revised versions in sections. It has published one in a year to several. It has changed it’s cover art in newer times to appeal more to todays young audience, but true to the old art my heart still holds. There is something special when holding an old hard bound copy of a Drew book, it is more intimate than holding my own baby photo album.

I have not read the series for many years so I can not compare how well the writing currently has held up. And when reading as a child I wasn’t reading with a writers mind but a childs, allowing for being swept off to other worlds, details of aduthood need not apply. But to read the series from start to finish now would be truly a year I would carve out in my life just for. However perhaps over the next half of my life I may carve out a summer afternoon here and there. I am sure I would sit in the shade of a tree and devour each book cover to cover if I should.

Though the hard copies have become paperbacks I still am fond of those yellow spines but not against the change of the books at an easier cost for children. I am however, peeved at the artistry becoming so poor, ugly, unspecial, and childish especially when as a young pre-teen to early teen I loved the Nancy Drew sophistication, the image of a woman I would soon become. At a time when my mind wasn’t in books or with my horses it was all about growing up and being in aww of it, but not in a grow up too fast way, I was in no hurry, I was only fascinated at what was to come, mainly getting taller. As a lover of vintage book covers, I would love to see any future ND books come out in a entirely new light. One that hasn’t forgotten that book covers, too, are part of the art. And a part of the memory. I am sure there is a happy medium to be found. However if I were to judge a book by it’s cover, I would pass on such a childish book, considering that the story inside must also then be dumbed down. There is no argument here on a grown woman reading a “childs book” because reading a classic vintage cover is to read a classic vintage book holding a classic vintage story.

I heard recently that a new TV series was shut down by the station as it would not be popular enough. I for one would have very much watched such a series. An update from the 1970’s.
As long as not on the Disney Channel or made into a childs show or anything Hannah Montana-esq. But as an adult show or even starting teenaged, a vine could grow such a tv show into a younger version of the same thing. A goal of many marketed items is to sell the same thing three times. Book, young pre-teen show, older late teen to any aged grown adults show. Though I feel it might end up much more of a women’s watched tv show, many men watch what the women choose and since this has included desperate housewives, Once upon a Time, and Buffy The Vampire Slayer to name a variety, I am sure the audience might happen to be just wide enough to calm tv stations fears. I just say that it needs to be treated right. Even if childhood books, the books were never childish. I would think that since the writing is there, it would be casting, bad acting and poor production that would bring it down if anything were to. Really the show, Call The Midwife, would make a good example of what a good Nancy Drew series could be in old fashioned, young women, quick story lines, and good production on not the largest of all tv shows. Bad direction would be the Disney Channel, Hannah Montana or anything of a non-carton Scooby Doo movie has been.

To learn where to start on building a collection, I highly recommend this site as your first stopping point, and going from there.
I would also recommend that once you know each copies worth, not to make online shopping your only point. After all, Nancy Drew is about the hunt for solving the mystery, garage sales and especially antique shops/malls are really great sources. (There is one antique store in Gaveston that has an entire shelf unit of them) ..IF you have your worth knowledge in hand so as not to be gouged by over paying. With information easy to pull up in hand these days, however, perhaps you have a chance at making a deal with the seller.
Making the search half the fun is exactly how I enjoy finding my books and what I plan to do. If you are searching for a special bookworm in your life, maybe take them on the hunt as part of a gift of book being the prize.

Well, look at the time. I get started on books and could go on but for now feel free to comment anything Nancy Drew related for some Nancy Drew conversation.


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