Book Review: Nancy Drew Mystery Stories

The Nancy Drew Mystery Stories that were originally published in the 1930’s are just right for tween girls of today! Readers will be relieved to discover a character who is polite and feminine in addition to being spunky, resourceful and a good friend. The ‘old-fashioned’ elements of the books are really negligible; in fact, readers may enjoy some of the slower-paced lifestyle elements and references to old telephones and technology – they add a certain ‘something’ to the atmosphere! Happily, the books are largely devoid of uncomfortably outdated terms and racial or sexist attitudes.

Nancy Drew mysteries are generally centred around a theft or series of fairly innocent – but temptingly difficult to understand – events. They are not usually murder mysteries. The tone is cheerful and interesting. There is a small amount of violence in some of them, but it is nothing compared with the gore in Harry Potter or Percy Jackson books.

Here are few reasons why they might be an especially good choice for homsechoolers as well:

  • Nancy values her family and is happy to participate in domestic activities in addition to traveling around to solve mysteries. She gets along well with her family and everyone has room to ‘breathe’.
  • Nancy’s friends are just that – they are not the emotional crutch that friends’ characters tend to be in so much young adult literature at the moment. They are just people who enjoy eachother’s company.
  • Nancy has many practical skills, from scuba diving to playing tennis, driving, horse-riding and so on. Enjoy the enticing idea of doing many things well and excelling in the world at large!
  • Nancy has finished school, so her social life does not revolve around school acquaintances or events.
  • Nancy is an independent spirit with a strong will of her own, however she is also compassionate and thoughtful. She ‘does her own thing’ but also has a strong sense of community and is sensitive to others.

Overall, Nancy Drew Mysteries are a really nice series that are well worth tracking down at the local library (or ordering from Amazon).

P.S. The cover featured here is one of my daughter’s favourites. For a complete list of the books, look here.

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