In the original text of Hardy Boys #12, Footprints Under the Window, the Hardy boys learn that the owner of their laundromat has disappeared and has been replaced by a sinister Chinaman. Soon, the boys see Chinamen here, there, and everywhere. They sneak into the Hardys' house, and they get into brawls down on the dock. They have taken over Bayport just like the Centrovians did to River Heights in the Nancy Drew book, The Scarlet Slipper Mystery.
doesn't help that the Chinese are called "Chinamen," which is now an
offensive term. Every time another Chinaman showed up, I got annoyed. They were everywhere!
and Mrs. Hardy got back from a trip right at the end of the last book,
and at the beginning of this book, they are back on another trip. What's up with that?
I could not stand this book, and I ended up skimming most of it.
detected a change in story quality beginning with #10, and that book
was the first one outlined by Edna Stratemeyer Squier. Edna typically
came up with crazy story ideas, and she outdid herself with Footprints Under the Window.
On page 169, Tremmer refuses to return to the United States with the Hardys. He believes that he will be arrested and prosecuted for being part of the fake oil company. The boys are "aggravated by his stupidity." I disagree. The boys are wrong to judge Tremmer. I can see where Tremmer would be worried, and his logic makes sense to me. For all Tremmer knows, he would be arrested for aiding the criminals.
A Yaqui Indian guides the boys while they trek around the Mexican countryside. The Yaqui tells the boys to call him "Yaqui." I mean, really.
The villain has a habit of branding the letter "P" on people's foreheads. This is a bit gruesome.
I greatly enjoyed the book, and it was a relief to read it after the torture of the previous book.