Archive for July, 2006

a Trixie Belden for every occasion

Sunday, July 30th, 2006

At one time I thought that everything the human mind could conceive is already on the Internet. But then I realized I was wrong, because it didn’t yet have this–“this” being a reading suggestion from the Trixie Belden canon suitable for every possible occasion.
Today’s occasion is Summer. Hot, humid summer, when after five minutes outside your skin no longer feels like it belongs on your body but instead feels like you are covered head to toe with a heavy plastic tarp.
There are several potential Trixie choices for this type of weather, but I’ve chosen two. The first is The Red Trailer Mystery. Even if you don’t have air conditioning and are doing your reading two inches away from an electric fan while putting ice cubes down the back of your own neck, you can say to yourself: “At least I’m not living in a tiny, metal, un-air-conditioned 1940s era trailer home with two other humans and two dogs right now.” The Red Trailer conveys the dripping humidity and toaster-oven-like feel of August as well as or better than any other book I’ve read. And, of course, there’s lots of exciting mystery and adventure; and, since it’s only #2 in the series, we’re still just getting to know the three central characters, which is a lot of fun, and might take your mind off things for a minute or two.
If you’re not of the mindset that misery loves literary company, however, here’s the opposite approach: Mystery at Mead’s Mountain. This is probably the coldest of the Trixie books. T he opening scenes take place during a blizzard, the Bob-Whites spend all their time cross-country skiing, and somebody even gets buried in an avalanche. That ought to make you feel cooler if any book could. It’s also about my favorite of the post-1970 books, and should be a walk down memory lane for those of us born during that colorful decade (“‘Mead’s Mountain is a private, personal kind of place,’ Linda said emotionally”–see what I mean?).
The Internet is now complete.