Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Hardy Boys #38 Devil's Paw and #39 Chinese Junk

In the original text of Hardy Boys #38, The Mystery at Devil's Paw, Frank and Joe head to Alaska with Chet to help Tony, who is working in Alaska on a summer job.  During their journey, the boys are followed and attacked.  The trouble continues in Alaska, as the boys search for the gang responsible for the attacks on Tony.

On page 115, the boys are offered raw salmon and eat just a few bites, since the raw meat does not appeal to them.  How quickly they forget!  In the original text of The Mark on the Door, the boys eat raw fish just caught from the river and don't seem to mind.

I overall greatly enjoyed this book, but it began to drag for me towards the end.

In Hardy Boys #39, The Mystery of the Chinese Junk, the Hardy boys purchase a secondhand Chinese junk in New York City.  Even before the transaction is finalized, one Chinese man after another shows up desperately wanting to purchase the junk from the brothers.

This book parallels Footprints Under the Window in that Chinese men show up all the time throughout the story, menacing the Hardy boys.  The Chinese men even get into a fight while on the deck of the junk while in the harbor.  I seem to recall a brawl between all the Chinese in Footprints Under the Window.

I found all the Chinese men showing up constantly to be a bit annoying, kind of like how I felt while reading Footprints Under the Window.  I did end up laughing at the absurdity after reading this short passage at the top of page 30.
...a short, slender Chinese approached them on the dock.

"Good grief, another one?" Chet muttered.
This is another book that lacks a clear purpose.  We can assume that the men want the junk because of smuggling.  We don't know, however.  All we know is that the boys are using the junk to earn money during the summer, and these Chinese men keep interfering, sending warning notes, and boarding the junk.

While silly, this book is an improvement over Footprints Under the Window.  I enjoyed it.

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