Saturday, June 28, 2014

The Three Investigators #5 Vanishing Treasure and #6 Skeleton Island

In the Three Investigators #5, The Mystery of the Vanishing Treasure, a priceless golden belt embedded with jewels is stolen from a museum.  The boys offer their services, but the security guard declines.  Soon, however, the boys are offered another mystery.  Mr. Hitchcock tells them about his friend, Miss Agawam, who keeps being bothered by gnomes.  The gnomes sneak into her house at night and mess with her belongings.  The boys are skeptical about the gnomes, but soon after they arrive at Miss Agawam's house, they see a fierce-looking gnome!

I love the description of Miss Agawam's house.  It is sandwiched between two tall buildings in what is now a business section of the city with a fence at the rear and a very tall hedge at the front.  The house is completely isolated and feels like it is in a different world.

It was while I was reading this book that I realized that the Three Investigators books that I have read so far do not feature the many fistfights seen in boys' series books like the Hardy Boys books.  You might recall that I wrote that my feelings about the Hardy Boys series could have been a factor into my decision to disregard this series as being of possible interest.

This is a very good book and is very suspenseful. 

In the Three Investigators #6, The Secret of Skeleton Island, Mr. Crenshaw is working on a movie set on Skeleton Island, which is located off the east coast.  The boys are asked, via Mr. Hitchcock, to act as extras as skin divers.  Their participation in filming is to be used as a cover.  The movie set has been plagued by theft, and the boys have been asked to investigate.

The boys also learn that a ghost haunts Skeleton Island.  A girl was struck by lightning while riding the carousel on Skeleton Island many years ago, and her ghost haunts the carousel.  Meanwhile, the boys find themselves helping a new friend, Chris, hunt for pirate gold.

I like how an imposter picks up the boys at the airport and strands them on a small island at night during a storm.  Perfect!

This book has the feel of one of the very good Trixie Belden books, which is the series of which these books remind me the most.  A big reason is the camaraderie of the three boys, and the fact that they are the members of an organization which is similar to a club.  The boys have to do chores in the Jones Salvage Yard, just like how Trixie and her friends have to do chores.

These books do not feel like the typical boys' series book, so I find that I am liking them a lot, more than any boys' series book that I have read.  That means that I am enjoying them more than the Ken Holt series, which is considered a top boys' series.  Trixie Belden is my favorite girls' series right behind Nancy Drew.  Any series that gives me an experience similar to reading the Trixie Belden books ranks high indeed.

This book is exciting and engaging from start to finish.

Both of these books are outstanding.

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