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Nancy Drew TV Show Making You Nostalgic? Revisit These Books

by  | October 9

I’ve always been a voracious reader, and some of my favorite childhood memories involve books—reading way past bedtime under the covers, lugging home bags of books from the library, friends getting mad at me for wanting to read at their sleepovers, and reading out loud scandalous passages of books, such as Judy Blume’s Forever on the playground. My mother is also a big reader, and I always felt such a connection to her when she would hand me copies of books that were her favorites from when she was growing up. During those moments, I didn’t see her as “just” a mom; I could picture her as another little girl like me who would rather be reading than doing anything else. Her copies of the Nancy Drew Mystery Stories series were among the many books she passed down to me.

I can still picture the covers: they always seemed old-fashioned with this serious-looking redhead, always in a dress, who always seemed to be caught in a kind of creepy situation. I definitely read the first couple of books, The Secret of the Old Clock and The Hidden Staircase, and all the others, but I don’t remember most of their names or what they were about. I just remember being drawn to the fiercely independent Nancy and her friends, “plump” Bess, “tomboy” George, and her steady boyfriend, Ned. They always were solving some cool mystery and going on fun adventures in Nancy’s sports car.

I don’t know how old I was when I stopped being interested in Nancy Drew, probably when I discovered the series that I have the most nostalgic affinity for, Sweet Valley High. But when I heard the CW was coming out with a Nancy Drew series that was more like a dark soap opera, Riverdale style, I decided to see what my girl detective has been up to since I stopped reading her in the 80s. Was she still wearing those prim fit and flare dresses and did her hair still have that iconic little flip? 

It turns out Nancy has been up to a lot! She’s always changing. This character has nine lives! I had no idea that the series had actually started in the 30s, and then was revamped in the 50s and 60s, the time period I was reading from. In the 80s and 90s, the series changed from the Nancy Drew Mystery Stories to the Nancy Drew Files. The spinoff was a little more edgy than the original, and apparently Nancy and Ned had a bit of a dysfunctional relationship. And then in the early 2000s, the series changed again to Nancy Drew: Girl Detective. In these books, Nancy has adapted to the modern world: she drives a hybrid, uses a cell phone, and  narrates the stories. Then, in 2013, the Girl Detective series ended and the Nancy Drew Diaries began. The current series is also written in the first person and incorporates current pop cultural references.

Although part of me wishes that we would leave beloved characters like Nancy Drew alone and keep them in a time capsule, I understand why changes have to be made to attract new generations. Even though I’m a retro Nancy Drew lover, I know I’ll end up bingeing Nancy Drew when it shows up on a streaming site (the series debuts on the CW on October 9) to see what my old friend has been up to after all these years.

Forever . . .

Forever . . .

by Judy Blume

You’ll never forget your first time...reading Forever, Judy Blume’s groundbreaking novel about teen sexuality, as an ebook.

When you build up something in your mind—really imagine it, wish for it—sometimes, when it actually happens, it doesn’t live up to your expectations.
True love is nothing like that.
Especially not for Katherine and Michael, who can’t get enough of each other. Their relationship is unique: sincere, intense, and fun all at the same time. Although they haven’t been together all that long, they know it’s serious. A whole world opens up as young passion and sexuality bloom.
But it’s senior year of high school, and there are big changes ahead. Michael and Katherine are destined for another big “first”: a decision. Is this the love of a lifetime, or the very beginning of a lifetime of love?

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Nancy Drew Mystery Stories

Nancy Drew Mystery Stories

by Carolyn Keene

Together in this one book are the two original Nancy Drew’s mysteries, which began the classic series of the girl detective!

Nancy Drew investigates two cases sending her on dangerous adventures. In The Secret of the Old Clock, Nancy Drew must solve a mystery surrounding a missing will and an old clock. In The Hidden Staircase, Nancy’s bravery is put to the test when her father is kidnapped. These classics will keep young mystery lovers on the edge of their seats.

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Nancy Drew Files Vol. I

Nancy Drew Files Vol. I

by Carolyn Keene

The world’s favorite teen detective is back, and she’s on the case. Keep up with Nancy Drew in this thrilling collection of mysteries full of intrigue, boys, and murder.

Check out the entire series of Nancy Drew Files!

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Where's Nancy?

Where's Nancy?

by Carolyn Keene

Let me tell you, this sleuthing thing is no joke. We've worked with Nancy on lots of cases, but we've never had to do it ourselves -- and the stakes have never been so high. We think this might have to do with that possible museum theft Nancy was talking about -- we're just not sure yet. But we're woking on it.
Wish us luck! Check out the entire series of Nancy Drew: Girl Detective Super Mystery. 

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Hidden Pictures

Hidden Pictures

by Carolyn Keene

Nancy Drew and her friends Bess and George tackle everything from sabotage to kidnapping, using their impressive powers of deduction and reasoning to creatively crack cases and outsmart their enemies in the clever, contemporary, and delightfully suspenseful Nancy Drew Diaries.

Check out the entire series of Nancy Drew Diaries. 

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