Monday, April 16, 2012

Nancy Drew #19 Quest of the Missing Map

Both the original and revised texts of Nancy Drew #19, The Quest of the Missing Map, tell the same story. The revision is a condensed version of the original story.

In both versions of the story, Nancy has a hunch that the missing map is secreted in a model of the Warwick after she and Mrs. Chatham read a letter about the map being hidden on the Warwick. The girls look in the ship cottage for the model, but they determine that the Warwick is one of the models that Mrs. Chatham sold. Nancy decides to check Mrs. Chatham's list of the buyers and selects the man who paid the least amount.

In the original text, the buyer is quite deaf, and Nancy has to yell at him to get him to understand. Suddenly, one page later, Nancy seems to have no trouble communicating with him. She no longer shouts, and the man has no trouble understanding Nancy. If deafness is to be used as part of the plot, then the deaf person should be consistently deaf.

In the revised text, Nancy visits the buyer on the same day that she and Mrs. Chatham discuss the sold models. Strangely, when Nancy arrives at the buyer's home, he mentions an advertisement in the newspaper from days before in which someone offered to buy the model of the Warwick.

Exactly how did the villains know to look for a model of the Warwick days before Nancy did? Nancy only comes up with the idea right before she begins the search and as a result of reading the letter about the location of the missing map. The villains did not have that information, yet they somehow decided to search for a model of the ship.

The original text mentions nothing about an ad for the model, which makes the original text have more logic in this portion of the story. However, the original text has a bizarre extra scene in which the girls encounter an elephant on a country road. The owner comes along, telling the girls that the elephant is an enemy of Spike Doty and escaped to go after him. What an amazing coincidence that Spike Doty is in the area as well as an elephant that hates him.

Nancy and her friends run out of gas in the original text, page 154. After Nancy realizes that she has no gas she "lost her usual calm. The nearest gasoline station was a full mile away." Uh, this is a problem? I would have hopped out of the car and began walking towards the gas station. One mile is not too bad. Now if it were ten miles, that would be different.

So what does Nancy do, since one mile is such a huge distance? She and the girls wait in the car for someone to drive along and give them some gas. This seems so un-Nancy-like. I thought Nancy was more resourceful than that. One mile!

In the revised text, Captain Stryver mentions that his employer, Mr. Heppel, owns the Primrose and that Mr. Heppel will be in town the next day to talk with Stryver. In the original text, Captain Stryver mentions that his former employer, Mr. Heppel, owns the Primrose and that Mr. Heppel will be in town the following day to speak with Stryver. Also of importance is that Stryver is in River Heights to visit his daughter. Why would a former employer travel all the way to River Heights to visit Stryver who does not even live in River Heights himself? By changing Mr. Heppel to Stryver's current employer, the revised text is more logical.

Near the end of the original text, a statement is made about the three prisoners on the boat. In the revised text, a sailor named Todd throws Nancy overboard. Todd is led away, and I presume that he becomes a prisoner. This makes Todd the fourth prisoner, yet the same statement is made about the three prisoners. Oops. That's the problem with adding content and not considering how it affects other parts of the text.

Both texts have some flaws in logic, but since the original text is more fleshed out, I regard the original text as a better story.

8 comments:

Lauren said...

However, the original text has a bizarre extra scene in which the girls encounter an elephant on a country road. The owner comes along, telling the girls that the elephant is an enemy of Spike Doty and escaped to go after him. What an amazing coincidence that Spike Doty is in the area as well as an elephant that hates him.

This really made me laugh. An avenging elephant, who knew? :)

Idylatoo said...

I told my mom last night that I like things that suffer from Enterprise Syndrome. For those who aren't Star Trek fans, the ship is usually the only ship in the area when something goes wrong.

Like the Enterprise, Nancy is usually surrounded by the same sort of coincidences and obvious explanations.

I will say though, that Nancy in the original text was probably wearing heels and I wouldn't walk a mile in heels either. =D

Judy said...

I just reread this and I don't know which text I have but it is one of the older covers so I'm guessing original.

In any case, in my story there are TWO Warwick models and the second buyer has the one with the map. The second buyer does mention the advertisement to buy the Warwick. Could there be a hybrid version of these texts?

I can explain the ad by assuming that Spike Doty found the letter stating the map was hidden on the Warwick, and then left it where he found it. Normally the crook would take it but this time he wasn't that smart.

That whole elephant episode was a totally bizarre tangent in the story.

Shelley said...

I recently found an overlooked box of my mother's Drews, Boltons, Dana's and others. The markings inside the books indicate that most of them were purchased in 1942 when she was 12 (she made dated library lending cards for them). 'Missing Map' was published that year, and while I'm sure it's not a first printing, I think it's an early edition. Missing it's DJ, all I have to go on for clues are the last 2 interior pages. First is a listing of ND stories up to 'Moss Covered Mansion', and the next page is Jane D. Abbott's Books For Girls with 'Red Robin' as the last book. Any thoughts?

Jennifer White said...

With those post-text ads, the book is one of the first three printings. If the book has good quality paper, then it is either the first or second printing. The first two printings are indistinguishable unless the jacket is present. If the book has bad quality paper that has deeply yellowed, then it is the third printing.

Shelley said...

The bright ivory pages are still supple and readable, which suggests 1st or 2nd printing. On her homemade 'library' card for the book, the first date stamped is March 30, 1942. Three of her ND's still have their DJ's (white spine w' silhouette), where would you suggest I purchase protective covers?

Jennifer White said...

I use the covers from Demco.

Demco Paperfold

I use the 8" covers for most Grosset and Dunlap books, including the Nancy Drew books. If you have any books that are taller like the cameo edition Nancy Drew books with dust jackets, then the 9" covers work best for those.

Shelley said...

Excellent! Thank you :)