Goodreads: Goldie Vance, Vol. 2
Series: Goldie Vance #2
Sixteen-year-old Goldie Vance works at the Florida hotel her dad manages, and dreams of becoming the resort detective. So when she and her best friend Cheryl find an unconscious astronaut washed up on the beach, Goldie sees her chance to prove herself. But what if she loses her friendship with Cheryl in the process?
The Goldie Vance graphic novels are a fun series featuring a biracial teenage sleuth who dreams of becoming the in-house detective for the Florida resort her father manages. Set in the 1960s, they feature over-the-top plotlines involving Russian operatives, secret agents, and plenty of references to space. Readers seeking an upbeat all-ages comic featuring a likable and self-assured female lead will love the Goldie Vance stories.
My favorite part of the series so far may admittedly be the illustrations. I absolutely love how stylish everyone is, as well as the 1960s vibe. And I tend to be drawn to vibrantly colored graphic novels, so the color palette really appeals to me. Plus, did I mention how cute Goldie and all her friends are? Often she is depicted with over-exaggerated emotions or little hearts around her, rather like a manga character. I think tween readers in particular will really love the art.
The stories so far have tended to be a little unbelievable–this one even more so than the first volume. Goldie and her friend Cheryl find an astronaut washed up on the beach. This leads up to a plot featuring secret government projects, NASA, and more. Plenty of people, including the marketing team for the comics, have compared the Goldie Vance books to Nancy Drew, but they have more of a spy thriller thing going on. Nancy’s adventures are sometimes far-fetched, but they seem like they could conceivably happen in the real world. Goldie’s adventures are more escapist.
This volume also suffers a little more than the first from Goldie’s tendencies to make inferences without explanation or evidence. In this story, she sees Cheryl giving the astronaut a ride, and, for reasons unknown, completely flips out. Later on, it becomes apparent that Cheryl must have been missing for some time, but this is not really depicted. For awhile, I was actually unsure what mystery Goldie was supposed to be solving, because tracking down Cheryl because she was in a car did not seem to be all that mysterious.
Still, on the whole, the Goldie Vance comics are a delight to read. They are clearly not supposed to be taken very seriously, but are, rather, a fun mystery series appropriate for tweens and teens alike. I’m not sure why I have not seen many others talking about Goldie Vance. Each time I finish one of her adventures, I immediately want to start a new one!