Thursday, October 22, 2015

Nancy Drew Diaries #10 A Script for Danger

In Nancy Drew Diaries #10, A Script for Danger, a movie is being filmed in River Heights.  As usual, Bess gushes over the star, Brian Newsome, while George grouches and eats a lot.  Firecrackers explode inside a coffee pot on the set, and someone pours a messy goo over one of the costumes.  Someone is sabotaging the film!  This is so shocking!

I would never have guessed that yet another book would be about sabotage.  It's like Simon and Schuster is playing Nancy Drew Mad Libs.  Each book must center around sabotage, and they switch around names and places, making up another generic sabotage story.

I was mildly annoyed on page 10 when both Bess and George "smirked" because Nancy likes to solve mysteries.  It's like Nancy's own best friends laugh at her at every opportunity.

As with several other recent titles, too many characters are introduced too quickly.  I had trouble keeping them straight, which caused me to be less interested in the story.

Halfway through the book, I felt that nothing interesting had happened.  I was reminded of the dreadful Model Mystery Trilogy of the Nancy Drew Girl Detective series.

I enjoyed the second half of the book pretty well.  First, I appreciated that the book mostly quit introducing new characters.  More importantly, I liked the location of the old house in the middle of the woods, so that was the primary reason I liked the second half of the book better.

The story is not particularly satisfying, since I felt like I had read it before.  The primary story was borrowed from a few of the Nancy Drew Girl Detective books, and the tired-out premise of sabotage has been overused to the point that it is now a joke.

I overall enjoyed the Nancy Drew Girl Detective series, and I believe I am in the minority on that.  While I have greatly enjoyed several of the Nancy Drew Diaries books, I overall like the Nancy Drew Diaries series distinctly less than the Girl Detective series.  That's not good.  I feel like the Nancy Drew franchise is being allowed to deteriorate in quality and value.  How long will Nancy Drew remain in print with new stories before Simon and Schuster finally manages to destroy any interest in the books?

I would be fine with the Nancy Drew Diaries series continuing.  I really like the presentation of the hardcover books with dust jackets.

However, the stories must be improved.  The plots need to move away from blatant sabotage and get back to more varied plots.  A return to the premise of the Nancy Drew Digest series would be ideal, and the editors should forget all this nonsense of Nancy being a joke, Bess being a silly girl, and George being an annoying grump who loves to eat.  I like the girls' abilities in the Girl Detective books.  I don't like them in these books. 

All that said, I will continue to purchase the hardcover books, since I love the way they look.  Unfortunately, I will not purchase the books for what is inside.  I will continue to read the books in case the series improves, but I am losing hope.

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