Bayport BeatHappy New Year! Welcome to the third issue of the Bayport Times.
This month's issue has some more information on the end of the Hardy Boys, some new collectible discoveries, letters and A Figure In Hiding is reviewed.
See you next month!
The End Of The Hardy Boys - Part 2by Bob Nelson Hi! I just wanted to let you know the latest information regarding the publishing status of the various Hardy Boys series. I talked with Molly Walsh at Mega-Books in New York, and she informed me that Simon and Schuster has decided to continue publishing new titles of the digest sized Hardy Boys mystery stories. In order to cut costs, the new books will be produced "in house", however, so Mega-Books will no longer be producing the books for Simon and Schuster. The last title being produced for Simon and Schuster by Mega-Books will be #150: The Crisscross Crime. This title will be published in June. I don't know if there will be a publishing delay before Simon and Schuster will come out with title #151. Anyway, the following titles will be coming out over the next few months: #148: The Ice-Cold Case and #149: The Chase For The Mystery Twister. (The artwork for these two titles can now be previewed on amazon.com)
The Hardy Boys Casefiles will still end with #127: Dead In The Water. Simon and Schuster does, however plan on coming out with 3-in-1 Hardy Boys Casefiles books "Collector"s Editions" containing three previously released Hardy Boys Casefiles titles in each book. These books should come out starting late spring or early summer. It is not known at this time whether or not any original Hardy Boys Casefiles manuscripts will be published in the 3-in-1 format. Currently, only older titles are being included. Perhaps this is an attempt by Simon and Schuster to drum up publicity for the series. My hope is that Simon and Schuster will reconsider their plans to discontinue the series.
The Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys Supermysteries will definitely stop after the next two titles, Operation Titanic and Process Of Elimination are published.
Another interesting thing I learned is that a special book will come out next fall tentatively titled The Mysterious Case of the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew. Simon and Schuster has contracted with Lookout Books in New York to publish the book, which will look at the cultural impact that the Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew have had over the last 70 years.
Hardy Boys News Another collectible found last month:
The Hardy Boys Mystery Game - Canadian edition
Looks like the regular good old American edition of the Thunder Mountain game but everything is in both French & English! Made by Parker Bros.
Hardys In Review
This Month: A Figure In Hiding # 16 in the series.
Published in 1937 - text by Leslie McFarlane
The Plot: The Boys and Chet go to the movies and the theater is robbed. They pursue the crook but lose him. They run into Mr. Hardy, who is tailing two members of quack Dr. Grafton's "Eye Syndicate". Spying on the crooks from adjoining hotel rooms, they overhear a contretemps between one of the baddies and his adopted daughter, Virginia Sinder. She flees the hotel and is pursued by Frank and Joe, who, after discovering the unconscious theater robber on the way, save her when she drives her car into the river. The cops show up and Ginnie takes a powder, leaving Frank and Joe to go back to town in the thief's car. Chet is questioned at police HQ for his alleged involvement in the theater stick up and then is mysteriously dispatched to Boston by a phony note purporting to come from the Boys. Things really get cooking when Mr. Hardy enlists the aid of one of Grafton's intended victims to bait a trap for the quack. Grafton manages to get away by gassing the Boys but not before they realize that Grafton is actually the long-lost neer-do-well son of the intended victim! After trailing Grafton's henchmen, the Boys encounter Virginia hiding out on a farm. At the same time the two henchmen come looking for her and she escapes, only to seek shelter at Grafton's country hide out. She's held prisoner so Frank, Joe and Chet help her escape. Once again, she runs away from the Boys and they are re-captured and almost buried alive! They manage to escape, Fenton arrives with the cops, Grafton's syndicate is smashed and Virginia is reunited with her real family.
Comments: Really good story! Another winner by Leslie McFarlane! The action never lets up from beginning to end. The sub-plots tie together nicely (except for Chet being sent to Boston, which is never adequately explained) and nobody does anything particularly stupid (except the inexplicable behavior of Virginia Sinder and her grandmother which borders on idiocy, proving the old adage of the apple not falling far from the tree!) The Boys show plenty of guts, quick thinking and some decent detecting. Grafton is one of the meanest, slimiest villians ever! Aunt Gertrude is annoying, ill-mannered and ill-tempered as usual. Definitely in the top 10 of all the stories in the original canon.
Rating: Original: A- (Would get an A except Fenton acts like kind of a jerk at times!)
The Hardy Boys Drinking Game Here are some additions to the infamous game. E-mail me if you have more.
Drink every time the Boys run into Fenton in the middle of nowhere.
Drink every time one or both of the Boys gets his clothes soaking wet.
Drink every time Chet wants in on the case and then wishes he wasn't.
Bayport Mail Bagdkb@alpha.wcoil.com (Knox Bullock) writes:
Please put me on the list of subscribers to The Bayport Times. What a great idea. Thanks
email@example.com (Christopher Young) writes:
My seven year-old son and I visited your page and thought that it was very nice. He liked the synopsis of the Disappearing floor in issue two of the Bayport Times. He has the book, and will probably read it next, though he might get some others for Christmas. He liked The Firebird Rocket and The Secret of the Old Mill a lot. Keep up the good work!
umlockha@cc.UManitoba.CA (Glenn R. Lockhart) writes:
I just stumbled across your site last week, and I must say that it is fantastic. While I realized that others collected the Hardys, I did not realize just how serious things were in this area.
I also found your site to be a tremendous source of information--especially when I found out that some of the books I have that I thought were "oddities" were in fact, "rarities" (eg. "Wailing Siren" with no author's name on spine, "Flickering Torch" with no white printing on back, "Mark on the Door" with new cover but old story, "Masked Monkey" with everything on the spine noticably lower than normal). I hate to ask (it seems sacriligious) but do these have a value? Is there some sort of catalogue for the series? I don't think I'd want to ever sell them, but exactly how "rare" are they?
Also, what would you recommend for a "checklist" of the series? Has anyone written books? If so, where could I get them, and what is their cost?
I was first introduced to the Hardys at the age of five by my mother. She had decided that my brother and I were too old for fairy tales, and she remembered how we would watch the series on The Mickey Mouse Club--I don't remember this, but I'll take her word for it. As a result, she thought that it would be good to start reading them to us at a chapter each night before bed. The cliffhanger endings to the chapters were just that to us--cliffhangers. It got to the point that I wanted to learn how to read myself so I could read ahead in them--so I credit the series for helping to teach me to read.
As I collected them, I did notice that there seemed to be different formats for them--some had white endpapers, and some had brown; some had twenty chapters, some had twenty-five; the cover art was changing on some (in fact, while the "new" ones were being phased in, you could have your choice of both), etc--that I discussed them with my father, especially since the school library had some with brown and tan covers, but no cover illustration. It was he who told me that he had also read them when he was a kid, and that these brown covers had originally had dust jackets on them. He thought that there might be some of his still at my grandmother's, and that we would check the next time we went "home" to Ontario (we lived in British Columbia then, and got back every couple of summers or so). Sure enough, when we got there, we located four in really good condition.
When I got a little older, I started haunting used book stores in order to find the "different" ones, and my collection now fills three six-foot bookcases (probably a small collection by some standards, I bet), and is still growing...there are a number that I am still looking for--my new mission is to get at least one example of each of the jacket types, and I am well on the way. One of the other things that stirred my interest is the fact that the originals were written by a fellow Canadian, Leslie McFarlane; I remember the Weekend Magazine article from 1970 or so that broke this story, and it fascinated me.
One of the most fortuitous occurrences I have had concerns the finding of a white spine copy of "Old Mill": I collect a number of other things as well, and one of these is St. Patrick's day postcards. I subscribed to a paper called Barr's Postcard News, in which were reported several mail auctions. Once, on a whim, I bid on a lot that was described as "a miscellaneous lot of seven popular children's books." On a whim, I bid $15 for the lot; in two weeks, I received a postcard in the mail notifying me that I had been successful...so I sent off a money order to Marilyn Nuhn, the auction holder, for my goods. When the parcel came in the mail, I opened it up to find a Tom Swift with jacket, a Zane Grey western, a Ted Scott, also in a beautiful jacket, a couple of others, and the aforementioned white spine. I think I got my $15 worth, don't you?
As a curious side note to the above: about three years ago, I decided to go back to University to get my bachelor's degree. One of the services offered through the school library was a periodical article service, funded by the government of Minnesota. Any article you could find in the Periodical Index could usually be gotten for you if your school didn't have it on hand, as long as you filed a request stating that you were using it only for research purposes. I looked in the Index one day to find articles on the Hardy Boys, and found Ms. Nuhn's name as author of an article in "Hobbies" magazine. So I requested the article. I was surprised to find when it arrived that one of the photos in the article was of a white-spined copy of "Old Mill"--was the one in the picture the one I now owned? I am sure that it was!
Anyway, now that I have a list of rare varieties to look for, I'm keeping my eyes peeled for them. One you don't mention (which is probably just a freak, for want of a better word), is a copy of "Hidden Harbor Mystery" with the innards in upside down, although the endpapers are in rightside up.
Once again, you have a marvellous site; I'll be checking back for the new edition of "The Bayport Times" and will probably be using your Marketplace in the future.
The Great Hardy Boys Search!Is there a Hardy Boys item you simply must have for your collection?
Let me know and I'll publish it right here in the very next issue!
One item per reader please!
#19 - The Disappearing Floor - Original Text in Picture Cover Binding
#11 - While The Clock Ticked - White Spine DJ in Red Binding
Nancy Drew & The Hardy Boys Meet The Mad Scientist
British Collins picture cover Hardy Boys titles #48-56
Tony is seeking several different titles to help him with his Hardy Boys research.
Please contact him for more information.
Hardys For SaleClick here for my current list of Hardy Boys items for sale.
Contact me by e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org