Welcome to the DPL...

Welcome to the Damsel Preservation League or "DPL" for short. Contained herein, you'll find a multitude of damsels of all ages worthy of preservation, as well as many links to current artists & writers of the DID genre, and many old-school favourites. Although this is basically a research type blog, there may be some occasional "mature" themed comics so, beware of this. Also this blog & is moderated to keep the spam to a minimum. The majority of the images are ones I've personally "rebuilt" from either my own collection or scans found elsewhere on the 'net. Any applicable copyrights belong to the owners and I make no money from them. Also note that this blog is still a work in progress and will be added to as I continue along...

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

ND Super Sleuths

Way back in 1984, Waldenbooks, Kool-Aid and Wanderer Books (under the Stratemeyer Syndicate), published a series of "complimentary" books that joined Nancy Drew with the Hardy Boys in a series of short stories. I have only Book #2 and am hard-pressed to find any others. Mind you, this is not the first time the three sleuths have joined forces, nor is it the last. The latest series is spawned from the Nancy Drew Girl Detective series.

Book #2 features seven new mysteries and Nancy gets into plenty of trouble, but not in every tale. Paul frame illustrated the six plates for this & other books.

The first story, Old Masters, has Nancy, Frank and Joe thwarting art thieves. But it is Nancy that ultimately solves the mystery. No peril here, just a fun read.

In the second story, Phantom Thieves, looters are out in force as heavy rains and a raging flood, help to keep the authorities at bay. Most of the town of Jackson is flooded out. Looting has been going on even underwater, as the looters resort to scuba-diving. Here the reader is introduced to a distant uncle of Nancy's, Colonel Chris Drew, and his wife Edith. Colonel Drew is with the National Guard (though which state is not revealed in the story itself.) At the story climax, the main looters find Nancy snooping on dry land and trap her between a building and their van. The car she's driving belongs to her aunt Edith and is radio-equipped. As she calls for help, one of the crooks throws an oxygen tank through her window. The reader can assume she's roughly yanked out of the car and kidnapped into the van. When Frank and Joe try to reach her on the radio, they fail to contact her and a search ensues. By this time it has grown dark. Clews from a man who heard Nancy's cries for help, lead Frank and Joe to one of the flooded department stores. Using their scuba gear and underwater lights, they enter through a broken window and soon find Nancy bobbing up and down in the rising water, her right foot tied to a post! In the book it is Frank that unties Nancy's foot and saves her but, the illustration shows Joe doing the rescuing.

Nancy barely keeps her head above water

The third story, A Good Knight's Work opens up with Nancy and Frank being taken "captive" and locked in a set of stocks while visiting a medieval faire. Their crime? Not knowing the "king's colours". It was all a set-up by the younger brother, Joe, as a joke. Unfortunately, there was no illustration drawn for this scene, comical or not.

The fourth story Purge, Frank and Joe are visiting the Drews during Christmas vacation and become involved in a case of embezzlement at the local bank. Bess and George also feature into the story but nothing bad or perilous befalls anyone. The real crook is caught in the end, of course. This story also pertains to an early from of computer hacking and server-sharing.

The fifth story, simply titled HB, which refers to the ending of the story. Chet brings a note to Nancy as she, Frank and Joe are playing a game of Monopoly. Seeing as how she is visiting at the Hardy home, she wonders how someone else found out she was there, since no one else knew but her dad and the Hardys. The note instructs her to appear at a certain location at a certain time (a phone booth, in which a package is found.) The package turns out to be a VHS tape and it is taken back to the Hardy home for viewing. Nothing is shown but a an old brick house but, a matchbook that was in the package and the name of a local grocery delivery truck, provide clews as to where the house is or may be. Later on Nancy gets a 'phone call from the mystery man telling her her friends are running out of time (referring to Frank and joe, one would assume.) One last clew on the tape proves to be bird sounds and Nancy contacts an expert on birds. The sounds are I.D.'d and she finds the house. Turns out that the whole scheme was a ruse to get Nancy to go to the house and solve a mystery at the same time. Why? Because, as she soon finds out with all her friends and relatives gathered inside, it's her birthday! And what better present to give her than a mystery to solve? Bess admits to being the voice of the mystery man, while Chet admits to inventing him. Mystery solved.

In story #6, A Trail Of Diamonds, starts of with Nancy about to be interviewed for a local T.V. programme in Bayport. Then the lights go out...again. And a fire breaks out. Soon the three young sleuths are involved in trying to track down the arsonist. Archived video news footage reveals a 'phone company van at all the recent fires. With the I.D. number on the van, the trio eventually discover that the van was stolen. When they finally catch up to the arsonist (and thief), it is Nancy who discovers the loot in the back of the van, which is at the current fire site. She's roughly grabbed by the baddie (see illustration below), but ere he can do her any real harm, he's confronted by the police. Mystery solved.

Nancy caught snooping by the arsonist

The seventh and last story Danger in the Sky deals with a terrorist who has managed to "disappear" while the plane was in flight. To add to the mix of problems, every one on board that had an in-flight meal, quickly became sick, including the federal agent looking for the terrorist. Frank takes over as the pilot while Alice takes over as co-pilot. Nancy had made a check of all those who were not sick and who could fly a commercial plane, and so found Alice. After that an intense search in 1st class finds the terrorists clothing in a closet. It is only upon the emergency landing that the terrorist is found. Without giving away the ending, I'm inviting those interested for a guess as to who the terrorist was. The illustration shows stewardess Susan a moment after becoming ill. And since the three sleuths did not partake of the meal themselves, they did not become sick.

Susan becomes ill in flight

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