Sunday, August 16, 2009

Wearing the hat

To explain the post title, whenever anyone in our office does or says something incredibly stupid, the punishment is to have to put on the fire warden's hat, and stand and say a line in front of everyone else. I think the line comes from What's Eating Gilbert Grape, although I could be wrong there and it is something about climbing a water tower.

So in my recent analysing my YA reads post, I said:

As for mystery, are there even YA mysteries around?

I think that perhaps I meant any new YA mysteries around, because there was plenty around during the years when I really was YA. These days I am way past target audience range, but like so many other adults I still enjoy reading YA novels.

The big three were probably the Nancy Drew books, the Hardy brothers, and, my favourite, Trixie Belden and her friends. I cannot tell you how many times I read through the Trixie Belden series.

Confession time - over the years I have felt quite an affection for quite a few auburn/red haired men in fiction. Yes, Jamie Fraser is right up there, but my first ever love in literary terms was Jim Frayne, adopted brother to Trixie's best friend Honey Wheeler. I always thought Marty was really funny and older Belden Brian very serious, but to make a young girl's heart flutter then Jim was the man for me.

I wonder if tweens or teens who read this series now would find the books dated? I certainly didn't despite the fact that I would have been reading these in the early 80s (*ahem*) but the first of these books was originally published back in 1948. They certainly experienced a bit resurgence twenty years or so ago.

I was a little surprised to see that there were 39 books in this series. I know that I owned the first twenty or so, but no idea if I read the whole series or not. As an aside, over the last few days I have been thinking about doing a post on the series that I am reading. Apparently my love of ongoing series of books started early and has continued all through my reading life!

This next part of the post is only connected to the first part because it relates to my teenage life. I was watching Pretty in Pink tonight. Such good music, such fun fashion. I do have one question. Why on earth was Andrew McCarthy such a huge teenage heart throb? I will say that Jon Cryer made me laugh in this movie, and he still does now! Here's the Duckie dance just for fun.


  1. I used to be a BIGTIME Nancy Drew reader.. (in about 2-5th grade). I remember at one point my mother made me stop reading them because they would give me nightmares. LOL!

    Now it seems that our YA are more interested in reading about gossip girls are vampires... Sad. :(

  2. I've never really liked mysteries but I always made a special exception for Nancy Drew. I don't read them much now, though. It has to have a lot more than the mystery for me to like a book.

  3. I was always a big fan of Nancy Drew but the older years like in college. It was so very 80's. I think my parents were a little bit horrified. Even as a YA, I wasn't a fan of YA. Although, I'm starting to find YA I like, now after getting more than a few bad apples.

    Oh, and I need to go watch Pretty In Pink, stat. Your clip made me miss it!

  4. I loved Trixie Belden! I read her in the 1970's!! *bigger ahem* I so loved Jim also. He was just perfect. I can still remember the time he gave her the ring *sigh* and I thought Honey was the best kind of friend, and so pretty. I had freckles like Trixie! I'm collecting the series now, ostensibly for my daughter to read, but really so I can reread them all again one day!

    I have to confess to really having a crush on Andrew McCarthy in the 80's! I had really bad taste back then!! lol Because now I think Jon Cryer is a really good actor, very funny and intelligent, and if I could stand Two and a Half Men, I'd watch it for him! :-D

  5. I have all of the Nancy Drew books and last year I thought about rereading them. I read the first one and it was just too perfect... So, I didn't continue. I always liked the Hardy Boys better anyways. I never really read Trixie Belden. I did like the Bobbsey Twins, though, but even that series I only read a few here and there.

  6. I was a Nancy Drew girl - and I totally blame Nancy for starting my love affair with the mystery/suspense genre.

    As for new YA mysteries? That's a good question. Will have to ask our teen fiction buyer at work on Monday. I'm so out of the loop on YA - but it all looks like vampires, werewolves and zombies to me these day.

    Sigh, and I love Duckie. Honestly. How could Andie choose the "major appliance" after Duckie lip-synced Otis Redding!

  7. I never did like Andrew McCarthy. After seeing that movie I was in love with Duckie (never did know his real name until several seasons of 2 1/2 men were over) but the *real* heart throb in that movie was James Spader. Just wish he didn't play such a jerk 'cause he was gorgeous. Still love him, though.

  8. Hey Marg,

    This comment doesn't really have to do with this post (although I used to read Nancy Drew as a kid too and I didn't find them dated at the time either lol), I had wanted to send you an e-mail...but I can't seem to find your address anywhere on here. I just wanted to thank you for posting about my Michelle Moran giveaway on Historical Tapestry; I've had a lot of people enter saying they found out about it from you. Thanks so much! Your support and comments are awesome, I have always loved Historical Tapestry and I am now getting to know my way around Reading Adventures as well :) My e-mail address is HistFicChick at gmail dot com, send me yours on there if you get a chance so I have it!

  9. Email sent Allie!

    Nicola, I never really got it either. James Spader did look good in this movie, and had more high profile longevity than Andrew McCarthy did really as well.

    Wendy, I will be interested to hear what you find out. Duckie did seem like a far more interesting choice and Iona was prepared to vouch for more than just his lip synching abilities!

    Kailana, from what I can recall I only really reading Trixie. I don't know how they would stand up to a reread now though.

    Susan, did you secretly wish you had a gang of friends just like Trixies? As far now, I have always had a thing for Charlie Sheen, despite the fact that he acts like a jerk most of the time, and so Two and a Half Men is my secret guilty pleasure.

    Pam, hope you enjoy rewatching it. I certainly did.

    Meghan, I am still happy to read mysteries. Guess some things don't change.

    Allison, gossip girls and vampires/paranormal type storylines do seem to dominate the current YA markets. Good thing I don't mind reading those types of books!

  10. Wasn't she supposed to end up with Duckie at the end of this movie? I believe that's how John Hughes originally filmed it, but test audiences wanted the Cinderella ending...

  11. Yes, I have seen some things about that around the place. It would kind of make sense as well.

  12. LOL, I don't know why Andrew McCarthy was such a heartthrob back then because he was also hot here in Denmark. I never got it, there were others I liked much better.

    Anyway, when I was a kid and a tween I read English author Enid Blyton and her various mystery series for kids plus Danish mystery-series for kids as well. During my YA years I preferred to read about love, sex, coming of age, teenage-problems etc. Not mysteries. If I was a teen today, I would most likely prefer the same themes (with love and sex as the priority themes) and not mysteries. That is, as a teen, if I felt like a mystery, I would grab one of my mother's Agatha Christies!



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