Monday, April 8, 2013
Nancy Drew #41 The Clue of the Whistling Bagpipes
Bess has won a vacation for two people to her choice of destination by entering a photograph of Nancy sleuthing. Nancy will be famous because the picture will appear in a popular magazine. Nancy is dismayed that she will be likely recognized while in Scotland, but she suggests that Bess and George use the prize to journey to Scotland with her.
When Ned learns about the trip to Scotland, he tells her that he read a story about a group of thieves who are stealing sheep and lambs in the Highlands of Scotland. He suggests that Nancy try to solve that mystery.
Of course the missing heirloom and the stolen sheep end up being connected. At least the first half of the book consists of the bad guys attacking Nancy and chasing after her, trying to keep her from arriving at her destination in Scotland. This is not a mystery; it is a game of cat and mouse. Since the villains chase after Nancy constantly, attacking her, and giving her warnings, she knows who they are. The villains quite directly give Nancy all of her clues.
I mentioned in my review of The Secret of the Golden Pavilion that a lot of information about Hawaii was given, and that it detracted from the story for me. That is nothing compared to the amount of historic and geographic information about Scotland. Some entire chapters are devoted to sightseeing rather than anything to do with a mystery. Of course, the villains attack Nancy and her friends on every sightseeing trip, so I suppose we can consider each trip to be part of the mystery. That is, we can consider each trip to be part of the elaborate game of cat and mouse.
On page 5, Ned tells Nancy that she needs to be back by June 10 so that she can be at Emerson for a special event. The event occurs in The Phantom of Pine Hill, so this is a rare example of two Nancy Drew books fitting together chronologically.
On page 52, a houseboat tips over. The illustration depicts the houseboat tipped over in the water. It seems to me that water would have seeped into the houseboat, but nothing about this is mentioned in the text. The way the text reads, I get the idea that the houseboat was never in the water in the first place, which is strange since it is a houseboat.
The coincidences are a bit too much in this mystery. The girls rescue the people in the houseboat and learn of a nearby houseboat with strange occupants. Of course those occupants are the villains in this non-mystery.
The villains make a painting that can only be viewed by taking a circular object, such as a glass, and making it into a circular mirror by painting the glass with a reflective coating. I can't understand why the villains would use such a difficult method of communication. Actually, they did it so that the readers could learn about an interesting method of viewing a painting.
The Clue of the Whistling Bagpipes was not enjoyable to me, since it has very little mystery and consists of the villains chasing after Nancy and attacking her all the time. The entire story seems pointless.