Nancy Drew Girl Detective: Without a trace

October 1, 2007 at 12:12 pm (Nancy Drew)

Nancy Drew, who is still living with her father Carson Drew and her housekeeper Hannah Gruen in River Heights, is a classic and timeless girl detective, who seems to have endured through the 1930s to today. This book was written in 2004. Imagine!!! Still she is a very smart, independent and resourceful sleuth, who always seeks for economic justice and who always likes to see the best in people. As she is able to solve all the mysteries happening in River Heights, she is very popular and common among her best friends Bess and George and her boyfriend Ned Nickolson. In the original texts Nancy was 16. In the book Without a Trace she is already 18. Again she is motherless since the age of three (in older texts since the age of 10), and so she is very close to her father Darson Drew, who is a famous lawyer in River Heights. He has a very good reputation and this comes very handy during many mysteries Nancy Drew has to solve.

nacy-drew_without-a-trace.jpgNancy has to solve two mysteries in the book Without a Trace. She has to find out who is running through gardens in River Heights and stomping all the people’s zucchini. Moreover, she has to find out who has stolen the gorgeous Faberge egg, a precious family heirloom, from Simone Valinkofsky, a new French resident of River Heights.

While trying to solve the mysteries, she gets supported by her two best friends Bess and George and by her boyfriend Ned Nickolson. Bess Marvin and George Fayne are cousins, but are two very different characters. Bess is a very pretty girl, who is very boy crazy and enjoys it if boys are admiring her. She is very stylish and clothes and makeup play an important role in her life. Still she can do a lot of things that you would expect boys to do, like fixing up her own car and diagnosing a damaged gasket or a blown engine from a mile away.  George, however, is quite the opposite. She is very athletic and tomboyish and doesn’t care much about fashion and makeup. She really likes computers. Nancy falls in the middle. She doesn’t care about fashion the same way as Bess does, but still wants to look good when she meets her boyfriend. But she is more in mysteries than in fashion, and this we get to know when she meets Nick in the movie theater. Nancy arrives too late, because she has spent too much time dealing with the two cases and so she hasn’t had time to fix her hair. A short, thorny branch is hidden in her hair that probably got in when she was in Simone’s overgrown garden. This shows that she is more interested in mysteries than in her looks. The following paragraph also shows that she is not very interested in makeup and fashion.

“As I hung up the phone I couldn’t help being slightly relieved that Bess wouldn’t be coming by to play fashion consultant. It would give me more time to continue my investigations.” (p. 67)

And Nancy hardly ever wears skirts, although she is a girl. She wears a skirt for the party at Simone’s place, but she doesn’t feel very comfortable and blames the skirt first for her accident that happens at the party.

I liked this book best of the three I have read so far, because Nancy tells the whole story in the first person and seems to be more ‘real’ than in the other mystery novels, because she is not only perfect. So I could really easily identify with the girl sleuth. I also liked the roles her friends Bess, George and Ned played in the story, because their characters were described very well throughout the whole story.  You could easily figure out what roles they play in Nancy’s life. Although Nancy is very engaged in solving the mysteries, she accepts and even needs the help of George, Bess and her boyfriend Ned, which is one main reason what makes Nancy so attainable to me. Some scenes in the book show that Ned tries to help Nancy taking important clues into account, like when they were in Susie Lin’s restaurant and talked about the two cases. “Something about what Ned had just said made me think of something else”. (p. 53). Nancy describes Ned as not being into mysteries the same way as she is, but he’s more than smart enough to follow along when she’s in full hypothesizing mode. Ned seems to be a very patient guy and enjoys having such a smart girlfriend.

The friendship between Nancy, Bess, George and Nick makes the story very believable, because also in reality most people would need their friends’ or other people’s help when solving mysteries or other problems. 

Furthermore, in comparison to the first novel I read, “The secret of the old clock”, this story was much more thrilling, because you had to read the book until the end if you wanted to know who the egg’s thief was and who had stomped all the vegetables in the neighborhood’s gardens. I didn’t want to stop reading the book, because I wanted to know who the culprits were and this fact kept me reading.



  1. Erich said,

    Wow, that sounds interesting! I’d recommend my sister to read one of these books since she is very curious about mysteries.

  2. Beverly said,

    So nice to see Nancy Drew appearing in today’s world – blogs!
    Did poor Ned’s last name get changed for these series of books to
    Nickolson instead of Ned Nickerson? Inthe 1940 movie’s his
    name was changed to Ted Nickerson.
    — Nancy Drew still going strong since 1930-2008!

  3. jennifer said,

    In the book called Nancy Drew without a trace was amazing. I thought the person that
    stole the Faberge egg was jacques.But when i finished the book I found out how really
    stole the egg.

  4. dejah said,

    a good book i read most of the books

  5. Puru handsome said,

    really good i m impreesed

  6. charu :) said,

    may i get rest of the story

  7. meghan said,

    i think it was a really good book and i suggest you to read it

  8. Anonymous said,

    Who smashed the zucchini

  9. Anonymous said,

    so unexpected

  10. Suvi G said,

    Very interesting story

  11. Anonymous said,

    tbh i really dont like it

    • H said,

      I would really like to know who did it I’m to lazy to finish the book

  12. Anjana said,

    I like those book of Nancy please send me all the edition for the book to read it thank..

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