Saturday, Oct 20, 2018
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Nancy Drew Sleuths follow trail to author of books


(Editor's note: Millie Benson wrote 23 of the books in the original Nancy Drew mystery series, using the pen name Carolyn Keene.)

The Nancy Drew Sleuths were in Toledo, and after seeing some of the local sights, they spent time scouring second-hand bookstores and antique malls for hard-to-find early-issue girls and boys mystery series books.

A national group representative of most states, the group of book collectors is a spin-off from a 178-member Nancy Drew Internet discussion group, one of the first major clubs of its type.

Jennifer Fisher, group president and a recent law-school graduate, said 15 members of the nationwide organization came here as guests of Rick Sellers, one of the organizing members of the club. Their objectives were to connect with each other, to meet me and have books autographed, as well as to see The Blade.

Nancy Drew Sleuths was started a year ago by Miss Fisher and a handful of friends, who began discussing the original books through messages on the Internet.

“It caught on and within a year we increased to nearly 200 members, and it is still growing,” she said. “There are no dues or obligations. We select a Nancy Drew book which a member can read and then write an opinion of it for the Internet.”

Taken in order, the volumes on which comment have been made now number nearly 50.

The club consists of teachers, retirees, and people in many occupations in nearly all states of the union. Practically all are of middle age and are book collectors, Miss Fisher said.

One of the younger members of the club, she is a 2000 graduate of Texas Tech law school. Now preparing for the Texas bar examination, she plans to practice in her home state.

Miss Fisher came to Toledo to interview me for an article she is preparing for Whispered Watchword, a privately published fan magazine.

The group members, too, desired to visit my workplace. A date was set for the visit and 15 fans made the trip, meeting each other for the first time in Toledo.

Book collectors all, they wore identifying Nancy Drew T-shirts made by members of the group.

In attendance at an autograph session were members from Texas, California, Washington, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Ohio.

Millie Benson is a Blade Columnist.

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