This year celebrates 90 years of Nancy Drew mysteries.

I, like many others, grew up on Nancy Drew. I read each book more than once and couldn’t wait for the next new one.

Through Nancy’s adventures, I learned the meaning of the words “sleuth” and “titian,” gained an appreciation for small details, and took my first steps toward a lifelong interest in understanding human behavior. Her curiosity, creativity, and confidence were inspirational.

I also admired Nancy because she wasn’t superhuman. She solved every mystery, but she made mistakes and sometimes found herself in some troubling circumstances. Still, she never failed to keep going, to do her best to achieve a positive outcome.

Nancy was polite and helpful, humble and kind. She waited her turn, gave credit to others, and generously shared with others. She was respectful when stating her opinion, used facts to make her case, and enjoyed learning new things. She was a good and loyal friend. Of course, solving mysteries meant that she had to take some risks, but they were carefully calculated. Responsibility was her hallmark.

Nancy was a stellar role model. I wanted to be just like Nancy.

Recently, I learned that when the first books were published, some book stores and libraries refused to carry them. The reason? Nancy didn’t behave the way a young woman of that age was supposed to behave. Her unconventional actions and independent nature simply weren’t acceptable.

I’ve always thought of myself as being influenced by a Good Girl. Who knew that Nancy was actually a Rebel all along?

“The young sleuth smiled. Although she was glad it was all over, she could not help but look forward to another mystery to solve.” – Carolyn Keene, The Hidden Staircase

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