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Trixie Belden: The Secret of The Mansion
Our BookSleuth is specially designed for you. It was a fun trip down Memory Lane, and even now I'm remembering the ones that stood out and look forward to revisiting them. View all 3 comments. Jan 26, Lisa rated it it was amazing Shelves: middle-grade , mystery. When I was in elementary school, there were several girls' book series that I avoided because I thought they sounded so. For example, the Betsy-Tacy books. What kind of a dumb name was Betsy-Tacy? Another series that I gave the stink-eye to when I saw it on the shelves was Trixie Belden.
What kind of a name was Trixie?! Trixie sounded like the sugar cereal with the rabbit mascot that I knew from TV commercials, not like the name of a girl who solved mysteries. Two years ago I final When I was in elementary school, there were several girls' book series that I avoided because I thought they sounded so. Two years ago I finally read a Betsy-Tacy book and felt like a big dope when I discovered how sweet and adorable it was and realized how much I would have loved it as a kid.
Last week, while impatiently waiting for the next Sammy Keyes book to come out, I decided maybe I should give Trixie Belden a chance too. When I opened the first Trixie Belden book, The Secret of the Mansion , to the first page and read the first sentence, I felt very smug. All my suspicions were confirmed. Oh, Moms," Trixie moaned, running her hands through her short, sandy curls. I knew it! Trixie Belden was an idiot! All my revulsion had been legitimate! But then I kept reading, and I discovered that Trixie Belden was a little more complicated than she first appeared.
For example, Trixie's dad comes home a few pages later and informs Trixie and her mother that he found their elderly neighbor collapsed in his driveway and drove him to the hospital, where the doctors predicted that he would have little chance of survival. Trixie's response? You should have left him lying in the driveway, Dad. I never expected a girl's mystery hero from the late s to say something like that. Also, did you notice that her hands were grimy? And that she's wearing blue jeans?
As it turns out, Trixie's a pretty badass tomboy. She's impulsive, determined, a little selfish, and not afraid to get dirty or explore creepy places. That said, the book's tone is reflective of what was considered acceptable fare for minors in its time: The plot works out in the same magical, unrealistic way a Nancy Drew plot works out. The good guys are good and the bad guys are bad. Trixie and her friend Honey appear to be unaware of sex--for example, they continually daydream about their parents adopting the hot teenage boy down the road so he can be their brother because they like him so much--what?!
It's interesting how s-ands-children's-book wholesomeness meshes and jars with Trixie being an intensely strong-willed character. Trixie is a little too complicated, a little too independent for the world she lives in, but at the same time she doesn't have the experience necessary to always make good decisions.
And isn't that the same tension that lies at the very heart of the complexity of being a teen? Long story short: the first Trixie Belden book is a fun read featuring a reasonably strong female character. And since the first book ends on a bit of a cliff-hanger, I guess I'll just have to read the next one. View 1 comment. Nov 10, Kara rated it it was amazing Shelves: teen-sleuths. The book that started my lifetime obsession with serialized Girl detective books.
I had already read Nancy Drew when I discovered Trixie. Trix was far more appealing to me as she was younger and more accessible than Nancy who was elusively glamorous, poised, wore smart suits and drove a car. Trixie was a farm girl in "dungarees" who ride a bike or her horse as her mode of transport. Trixie, 13, exits in that fleeting period between childhood and teenagerdom, when girls and boys still co exist as The book that started my lifetime obsession with serialized Girl detective books.
Trixie, 13, exits in that fleeting period between childhood and teenagerdom, when girls and boys still co exist as friends and are not ready to be adults. She's short and sturdy, clumsy, bright but a bad student, quick tempered, fiercely loyal, resourceful and happy. Trixie and her family which includes 3 brothers, live in a farmhouse called "Crabapple Farm", in a fictional town delightfully called "Sleepyside on the Hudson in upstate New York.
She and her friends and brothers form a detective club called the "Bob Whites of the Glen". One of her friends whom I particularly obsessed with is Di, the newly rich, Elizabeth Taylor-esque beauty with black hair and "flashing violet eyes". I discovered Secret of the Mansion in an antique store when I was The story is simple and perfectly formulated for pre teen readers. After unsuccessfully begging for a horse her own from "Moms", Trix spies a horse trailer outside a nearby empty mansion. The new tenants, the Wheeler are a rich and glamorous family from NYC with a pretty daughter Trixie's age.
Trixie quickly labels Honey a priss for riding in fancy breeches but soon learns she has been sickly and sheltered, having been raised by her loyal governess Miss Trask. Honey and Trixie soon become best friends. Upon "exploring" breaking into an old miser's spooky mansion, the girls discover a teenage boy name Jim Frayne asleep on a mattress on the floor. It turns out Jim is the old man's grandnephew who had run away from his abusive stepfather. Local legend is Jim's miserly uncle hid a fortune in the mansion but it has never been found.
The half a million dollars is eventually discovered to be stuffed in the old mattress that jim had been sleeping.
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Trite but satisfying. I would recommend the Trixie Belden series to any young girl. Put down that Twilight book, read Trixie instead. Forget Daphne and Velma, Trixie Belden is the real deal for any young amateur sleuth. Nancy Drew was too old fashioned for my taste and the Hardy Boys could have went and sucked an egg for all I cared. What I finally did stumble upon was this read and it had so much to offer a little girl looking for some mystery mixed with a whole lot of relatable main cha Forget Daphne and Velma, Trixie Belden is the real deal for any young amateur sleuth.
What I finally did stumble upon was this read and it had so much to offer a little girl looking for some mystery mixed with a whole lot of relatable main character. I can also credit these books for my devotion to following and sticking with a book series as well. Like for example, this series would have led straight into my budding interest of the next phase of my life, being a teenager.
I can also almost guarantee that after I completed this series that the next series of books I pulled off the shelf was The Baby-Sitters Club. Stay tuned for that exciting review sometime in the near future… View 2 comments. When I was a kid, before my dad died, he used to take me to the bookstore when my mom was shopping. He bought me any book I wanted and of course it was a Trixie Beldon book every time! This popped into my head driving home from work tonight. It was no Harry Potter but it was what we loved as kids.
Jul 16, Pili rated it really liked it Shelves: the-midnight-garden-classic-ya-mg. This was such a fun sweet book! And it reminded me of one of my fave series as a child, The Happy Hollisters! Oh, how I devoured their adventures!
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A perfect summer read and even if it'll be a bit of a different read for younger kids these days, given how old timey it can read at times, it was full of charm and reminded me a lot of both very loved books I read when I was Trixie's age and also of the summers of my childhood, that I also spent under very little supervision, safely roaming and playin This was such a fun sweet book! A perfect summer read and even if it'll be a bit of a different read for younger kids these days, given how old timey it can read at times, it was full of charm and reminded me a lot of both very loved books I read when I was Trixie's age and also of the summers of my childhood, that I also spent under very little supervision, safely roaming and playing around in a small village, far from the rest-of-the-year-life-in-the-city!
Trixie was both an endearing and irritating character at the same time, because she was sweet and enthusiastic but could also be a bit too quick to judge and rather prone to act first and think later! Often rash and always determined she was also a very honest and open girl that was the best kind of influence for the very city girl and sheltered Honey also, that name? They both form a team that keeps each other on balance and once they find a very unexpected friend that they want to help and a mysterious inheritance to find.
Trixie Belden, Book 1: The Secret of the Mansion
I was expecting a lil bit more of the house mystery but I wasn't really disappointed because the book was full of summer goodness and the mystery was just another part of it! I know many wonderful people who love, love, love Trixie. My earliest memories of this series center around a supermarket in Coldwater Michigan which sold cheap Whitman hardcovers for 69 cents.
It's where I first learned about abridged books, to my everlasting shock and chagrin. I remember the odd Trixie Belden, but didn't retain anything more concrete than a dismiss I know many wonderful people who love, love, love Trixie. I remember the odd Trixie Belden, but didn't retain anything more concrete than a dismissive sort of feeling. At the urging of some people whose taste in kidlit I respect, I revisited the first of the series. My recall was accurate. I'm not a Trixie fan. From the smarminess of calling one's maternal parent "Moms" to the inaccuracy about snakebite garter snakes don't leave puncture wounds!
And if Trixie said "yummy-yum" one more time, I was going to dive into the pages of the book and box her ears. It got better toward the end, and I confess to a certain degree of curiosity about where they will find Jim. Tell me, Bob-Whites, do they improve as one continues?
View all 11 comments. Jul 26, Bonnie rated it it was amazing. June 13, Re-reading the first three in the series again. A summer tradition! Partly because I'm trying to get back on pace with my reading goal I have three YA books on hold at the library to pick up this weekend and partly because I just love this series and the first three are awesome books to read in the summer! Even the bad books are good because they're the June 13, Re-reading the first three in the series again.
But this book gets everything off to a great start. How could I not have fallen in love with a series whose opening line is, "Oh, Moms, I'll just die if I don't have a horse! But more than anything, the friendships in this series is what drew me to it, and has held me to it, some years later. Jun 25, Emma Grace rated it liked it Shelves: own.
Aug 22, Juli rated it really liked it Shelves: read-local-library I first discovered this series when I was about 12 years old or so. If I remember correctly, my sister gave me the first two books for my birthday, and from there my Trixie Belden collection grew to fill my small bookcase. I absolutely loved this series!
I think I identified with Trixie a bit Flash forward about 3 decades lol and I hadn't thought of Trixie and Sleepyside, NY for a very long time. I found an old copy of a Nancy Drew book at the thriftstore I did a little searching and found the first 3 books in digital format on the NC Digital Library big thanks to my small local library for expanding their offerings with this awesome site!
At first I was a bit afraid to start re-reading them. Would the books be too dated or too simple for me to enjoy them again as an adult? Finally, I worked up the courage to load book 1 on my kindle and start reading. Immediately, I was in heaven. Yes, the story is simple. And, yes, the verbage is a bit dated who says dungarees anymore? My old friends were right there on the pages Book one is actually the start of a 2-part story The tale starts in book 1, and finishes in book 2, The Red Trailer Mystery.
It's a great introduction to Trixie, her family and friends. The basics: Trixie discovers that a new family has bought the large manor house located near their farm. She meets the girl who lives there, Honey Wheeler. It's summer and the girls quickly become great friends.
The Beldens other neighbor, Mr. Frayne, is a grumpy old man, who lives in a crumbling mansion overgrown with weeds. The kids learn Mr. Frayne is ill and in the hospital. He isn't expected to survive. As kids will, they go poking around Frayne's house, wanting to get a look inside just once when the unfriendly old man isn't around to chase them off. They discover a boy hiding there. Jim, Mr. Frayne's nephew, is hiding at the house, having ran away from his stepfather.
The kids start searching for the stash of money Mr. Frayne is rumored to have hidden on his estate somewhere. Jim is Frayne's heir, but he's hiding from his mean stepfather. He hopes to find the money and use it to attend college and be free of his stepfather for good. The kids have many adventures together while searching for the money and exploring the woods. I had just as much fun reading the first book again as I did all those years ago! I'm definitely going to re-read the series, or at least the first 3 books which is all the local library has available right now. As they add more of the series in digital format, I will read more of their adventures.
It's nice to see the updated covers! I like the updated art better. It's more colorful and shows both girls. Very nice! But I still have my memories of an entire bookcase filled with matching beige books When I was leaving for college, I sold my entire set of books at a garage sale to a girl who was so excited to get to read them! I hope she enjoyed them and then passed them on to another girl! I got many, many hours of joyful reading from them! She then passed the series off to a series of authors, although they were all published under the penname Kathryn Kenny.
The series was published from - It remained out of print until , when the early books in the series were reprinted by Random House Publishers. It looks like they reprinted up to book 15, so quite a few books in the 39 book set remain out of print. Looks like I'm going to be hunting up a lot of used books to read the whole series! It will be worth it -- these are great books! The stories are simple similar to Nancy Drew but enjoyable. Sometimes it's nice to just relax and read an interesting, but uncomplicated, story. Mar 21, Frances rated it it was amazing.
I am reviewing the first fifteen books. I am 60 years old and I can still remember how much I loved these books.
Trixie Belden 01 The Secret of the Mansion
Trixie and Honey were my best friends. I would buy them at k-mart for 89 cents. The only problem was finding all of them. I later completed my set through e-bay. I had the hardbacks with the portraits of Trixie and Honey on the inside cover. They had the full color illustrations that I just loved. I trace my penchant for twin sweater sets from 8 in which Trixie, Honey and Di wore th I am reviewing the first fifteen books. I trace my penchant for twin sweater sets from 8 in which Trixie, Honey and Di wore them in different colors.
On the back cover it asked "Would you like to ride horses, belong to a secret club, have great friends and solve mysteries? When I see what kids read today it seems so sad and depressing. The joy seems to be missing. I still have my set of books that I read many many times. Feb 20, Lisa C rated it it was amazing Shelves: mysteries , kids.
These were the first books that I bought on my own -- waiting until the newest were published, scrambling to find the older copies that were slightly cheaper, taking them to the counter all by myself.
The Secret of the Mansion [Trixie Belden 1] | Open Library
I'd get so excited when I figured out how it was going to end, that tears would stream from my eyes as I tried to finish the last chapters not crying, just an odd Even though the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew TV show was a big hit at the time, like much of my generation, I was hooked on Trixie Belden. I'd get so excited when I figured out how it was going to end, that tears would stream from my eyes as I tried to finish the last chapters not crying, just an odd leaking of salty water. Though upon reading again a few years ago, I discovered that the original author was far better and more authentic with the 50's mentality--since she was actually writing then, the whole series had me enthralled well into my tweens.
My favorites will always be the first ones given to me, 1 and 3. Even after re-reading many times, I still think they are the best. Mar 13, Mark Baker rated it it was amazing Shelves: mystery , middle-grade , Meet Trixie, Honey, and Jim as the trio form a friendship and hunt for the treasure that is supposed to be in Jim's great uncle's old house. This is a very favorite series from childhood on, and I just love meeting the characters again for the first time.
They aren't quite themselves yet, and can be annoying as a result. Just know they grow stronger from their friendships by the next in the series. Read my full review at Carstairs Considers. Memories of childhood I read these as a kid and loved them. Forty years later I am reading these again. It makes me miss living with a yard and garden and being an indestructible kid again. These are great stories for young girls and even boys if they like reading about girl Memories of childhood I read these as a kid and loved them.
These are great stories for young girls and even boys if they like reading about girl characters who help solve mysteries. Jul 11, Denise rated it really liked it Shelves: trixie-belden. I was wondering if I would like Trixie as well at 58 as I did at 11 or 12 or whenever I read it as a child. The answer was yes. I have a different perspective of Trixie than I did when I was a child.
Trixie tends to do something before she thinks and is constantly having mishaps because of that. She is also rather careless. I'm sure as a child I was awed by her daring. I don't remember the story line at all in this book and I'm not sure as a child if I read all of the books or even I was wondering if I would like Trixie as well at 58 as I did at 11 or 12 or whenever I read it as a child.
I don't remember the story line at all in this book and I'm not sure as a child if I read all of the books or even what order I would have read them. I'm wondering if I will remember them as we get further into the series. One nice thing about reading a "kids" mystery is that you don't have dead bodies to contend with so someone that would like a cozy with no murder should consider reading some of the YA books like this.
Mar 05, Tracy rated it liked it. I loved these when I was a kid. I always preferred Trixie Belden to Nancy Drew. I still enjoyed this, although it seems funny to me how free these kids are to run around and have adventures. I say this having grown up in the sixties and seventies with a fair amount of freedom myself. As an adult I did find the story a bit too simple and problems too easily solved but it was fun nonetheless. Dec 02, Sheryl rated it it was amazing. She's missing some of them, but I'm going to spend some time re-reading the ones we found.
I won't do an entry for each one, so you might not hear from me for awhile. Mar 03, Lydia Dyslin rated it it was amazing Shelves: mysteries , reads. This is my favorite mystery series I've ever read - and it's so much better than Nancy Drew, I've realized, after reading so many of her books for The Nancy Drew Project. Definitely read these books, especially the first six! I totally recommend it.
Mar 19, Ari Sinclair rated it it was amazing Shelves: mystery , nostalgia , kids-fiction , favourites , on-my-bookshelf. Five stars for two reasons: First, nostalgia, because this was my favourite series when I was younger. Tbh, I still love it. The characters were so darn funny, and relatable, and MY AGE, which was pretty new, for a kid who read mostly classics xD Second reason, because these were legitimately good books.
Far better than Nancy Drew, imho The characters are fabulous imayormaynotstillhaveacrushonJim , the mysteries were creative and new in every book, and I love that they're about ordinary k Five stars for two reasons: First, nostalgia, because this was my favourite series when I was younger. The characters are fabulous imayormaynotstillhaveacrushonJim , the mysteries were creative and new in every book, and I love that they're about ordinary kids living ordinary lives--minus all the mysteries.
These books are legitimately good reading material for kids. Are they completely realistic? Probably not. But as a kid, they made me want to solve every little almost-mystery around the house.