Monthly Archives: August 2016

The Secret Pact

The Secret Pact by Mildred A. Wirt

The Secret Pact by Mildred A. Wirt

PENNY PARKER is a teen-aged sleuth and amateur reporter with an uncanny knack for uncovering and solving unusual, sometimes bizarre mysteries. The only daughter of widower Anthony Parker, publisher of the “Riverview Star,” Penny has been raised to be self-sufficient, outspoken, innovative, and extraordinarily tenacious. Her cheerful, chatty manner belies a shrewd and keenly observant mind. Penny was the creation of Mildred A. Wirt, who was also the author of the original Nancy Drew series (under the pseudonym Carolyn Keene). Wirt became frustrated when she was pushed to “tone down” Nancy Drew and make her less independent and daring. With Penny Parker, Wirt had a freer hand and received full credit. Wirt once said, ” ‘I always thought Penny Parker was a better Nancy Drew than Nancy is.” In THE SECRET PACT, Penny sees a man savagely pushed off a bridge into the river one foggy night. The man is rescued, but his stubborn denial of the attack, combined with the grotesque octopus tattoo he bears on his back, alerts Penny to the possibility of a deeper mystery. When her editor father, reporter friends, and even the high school newspaper all reject her story about the incident, she takes matters into her own hands. With her friend Louise’s help, Penny starts her own local paper, operating out of a formerly abandoned newspaper plant. As new clues emerge to the “Octopus tattoo” mystery, she enlists the help of anyone willing, even persuading Mrs. Weems to go “under cover.” Nothing, not even threats and an unexpected tornado, can deter the determined Miss. Parker.

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Kazan

Kazan by James Oliver Curwood

Kazan by James Oliver Curwood

Probably the most widely read of his novels during his lifetime was this engrossing tale of a magnificent animal that is part husky and part wolf. There is a struggle between the two breeds in Kazan’s makeup; he is torn between love for a particular man and woman and the desire to run free with the wolves, especially the one that he has chosen for his mate. In both of these contrasting parts of his life, he meets tremendous challenges that require all his instinct, strength, and spirit to overcome.

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Psmith, Journalist

Psmith, Journalist by P. G. Wodehouse

Psmith, Journalist by P. G. Wodehouse

Psmith takes over editing a paper while the usual editor is away on vacation. He takes on a local slum lord, and divers alarms ensue.

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The Quest of the Sacred Slipper

The Quest of the Sacred Slipper by Sax Rohmer

The Quest of the Sacred Slipper by Sax Rohmer

Cavanagh becomes involved in the adventurous search for a precious relic in the mysterious East.

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The Surprising Adventures of Baron Munchausen

The Surprising Adventures of Baron Munchausen by Rudolf Erich Raspe

The Surprising Adventures of Baron Munchausen by Rudolf Erich Raspe

The stories about Münchhausen were first collected and published by an anonymous author. An English version was published in London by Rudolf Erich Raspe, as Baron Munchhausen’s Narrative of his Marvelous Travels and Campaigns in Russia, also called The Surprising Adventures of Baron Munchhausen. It is not clear how much of the story material derives from the Baron himself; however, it is known that the majority of the stories are based on folktales that have been in circulation for many centuries before Münchhausen’s birth. (Summary by Wikipedia)

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The Scarlet Pimpernel

The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Emmuska Orczy

The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Emmuska Orczy

The Scarlet Pimpernel is set in 1792, during the early stages of the French Revolution. Marguerite St. Just, a beautiful French actress, is the wife of wealthy English fop Sir Percy Blakeney, a baronet. Before their marriage, Marguerite took revenge upon the Marquis de St. Cyr, who had ordered her brother to be beaten for his romantic interest in the Marquis’ daughter, with the unintended consequence of the Marquis and his sons being sent to the guillotine. When Percy found out, he became estranged from his wife. Marguerite, for her part, became disillusioned with Percy’s shallow, dandyish lifestyle.

Meanwhile, the “League of the Scarlet Pimpernel”, a secret society of 20 English aristocrats, “one to command, and nineteen to obey”, is engaged in rescuing their French counterparts from the daily executions (see Reign of Terror). Their leader, the mysterious Scarlet Pimpernel, takes his nickname from the drawing of a small red flower with which he signs his messages. Despite being the talk of London society, only his followers and possibly the Prince of Wales know the Pimpernel’s true identity. Like many others, Marguerite is entranced by the Pimpernel’s daring exploits. (summary by Wikipedia)

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The League of the Scarlet Pimpernel

The League of the Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Emmuska Orczy

The League of the Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Emmuska Orczy

The League of the Scarlet Pimpernel is a sequel book to the classic adventure tale, The Scarlet Pimpernel. The book consists of eleven short stories about Sir Percy Blakeney’s exploits in rescuing various aristos and French citizens from the clutches of the guillotine. The stories are set in 1793 but appear in no particular order. They occasionally refer to events in other books in the series.

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