Friday, August 30, 2013

Review: The Secret of Shadow Ranch

Title - The Secret of Shadow Ranch
Author - Carolyn Keene
Series - Nancy Drew #5
Genre - Pre-teen YA
Published - 1931


Nancy drew arrives in Phoenix, Arizona, eagerly looking forward to a fun-filled vacation at Shadow Ranch, but abruptly finds herself involved in a baffling mystery. The ranch is being haunted by a phantom horse and maliciously damaged by an unknown enemy. Local people believe that the ghostly animal is carrying out the curse of Dirk Valentine, the romantic outlaw who was killed many years ago at Shadow Ranch, where he had gone to fulfill a promise to his sweetheart.

Suspecting that a treasure hidden by Valentine may be at the root of the Shadow Ranch mystery, Nancy undertakes a challenging search, aided by her friends Bess Marvin and George Fayne. The first vital clue is found in an antique watch and sparks a series of clever deductions and dangerous developments. While seeking further clues, the girls' investigation in a ghost town ends in a near disaster when Nancy is trapped inside a building that is toppled by a rockslide - a rockslide which is deliberately caused. But the pretty titian-haired detective remains undaunted in her determination to solve the mystery.


Nancy has just finished a case headed for a much needed vacation with her best friends Bess and George in Arizona at Shadow Ranch. However her vacation may be short lived because upon arriving she learns that a mystery is unfolding at the ranch that could force all the girls’ home early.  Before the girls can even leave the terminal they encounter a stranger warning them away from Shadow Ranch, as if that’s not enough they have car trouble on the way to the ranch. 

As the girls arrive at the ranch Nancy convinces that Rawleys that she will be able to solve the mystery before times runs out for them all. As the girls dive deeper into the mystery they learn more about the phantom horse. They also learn the lore about who Dirk Valentine was and why someone would want to scare them off the ranch. With her friends by her side Nancy sets out to find who’s really after the ranch, will she find them before they find her?

I love Nancy Drew she one of those girls I was able to relate with as I was growing up. She’s also still enjoyable now that I’m an adult it’s just good clean mystery. Nancy is the kind of girl you can’t help being addicted to she’s smart and savvy but comes off as a real girl. Plus what can I say I love the outfits she wears; I visualize her as this cute blonde high school girl in grown woman clothes. Plus who wouldn't want to solve cases with your best friends by your side.  

I've always been a Nancy Drew fan my mom hooked me on her before I was ten, so reading her books is like visiting an old friend or fond memory. All of the books in the Nancy drew series can be read separately, or in order which is nice because I've been known to read them out of order as a child. It’s been ages since I've read a Nancy Drew and happened to be craving a clean quick mystery. Shadow Ranch is a fast paced quick read filled with action, adventure and horses the perfect makings of a great story. I always suggest Nancy Drew to younger girl readers because I feel like they will connect with her and want to read more of the series. That being said I think it’s a fun series that teen’s even adults will enjoy. I loved picking up and reading the whole book in one afternoon. 
4 out of 5 stars 

1 comment:

  1. Haha. It's been a while since I read Nancy Drew. I used to love Nancy Drew and mysteries so much that I checked out every book available at the library. :)

    Great review! And I agree about the relating and growing up part. LOL.

    Cindy @ In This World of Books..