Goodreads: Nancy Drew: Vampire Slayer
Series: Nancy Drew: The New Case Files #1 and #2
The latest vampire film has River Heights obsessed with the supernatural, so when a dark and handsome stranger arrives in town, immediately gossip circulates that he’s a vampire himself! Nancy Drew, girl detective, believes otherwise, but then why does his living room have a coffin?
I grew up with Nancy Drew and admired her for her intelligence, compassion, and love of adventure. These new graphic novels, however, seem to use the name of Nancy Drew without understanding who Nancy is. Nancy is not just any girl with curiosity or who enjoys mysteries. Nancy is independent, caring, smart, sophisticated, and sometimes just a little reckless. She is not air-headed, oblivious, and forgetful. Those are not the traits that solve mysteries and, aside from ruining the character of Nancy Drew, they simply do not make a lot of sense as characteristics of any successful detective. Without a signature Nancy to distinguish this mystery from the many others I could have read, this book simply fell flat for me.
Nancy herself obviously disappointed me on many levels. She has a habit of forgetting to do things like charge her phone or her hybrid car, which seems to be an easy way to complicate the plot. If readers think Nancy can easily solve her problems by calling for help or getting out of there–surprise! Nancy conveniently went on a mission without preparing anything! She also has a strange inability to read people or their emotions. Or, at least Ned’s. Nancy seems very intuitive about the handsome new guy in town, but somehow misses Ned’s obvious signs of jealousy. Furthermore, her emotional intelligence is so lacking that she cannot comprehend why her boyfriend would be upset at her ignoring him for weeks to go out to dinner and movies with another guy while holding his hand. After all, the hand holding is for, um, solving the mystery?
The focus on Nancy’s odd love life overshadows the main mystery, which apparently is meant to circle around whether or not mysterious Gregor is a real vampire. Of course he is not and Nancy never even tries to solve that mystery, so the plot summary is rather misleading. Luckily, in the second book Gregor reveals that he has a different mystery to solve–one which Nancy resolves rather by accident after doing almost nothing constructive. She does not have to investigate anything or solve any clues–because there are no clues. The answer to the case just walks into her.
After finishing the books, I was rather confused. This Nancy Drew mystery not only features a completely unrecognizable Nancy, but also fails to feature a real mystery. If readers want to see Nancy and Ned relationship drama, this is the book for them. Otherwise, it really, I am sad to say, has little to recommend it. Nancy Drew deserves better.