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Nancy becomes involved in a maze of mystery when she accepts an invitation from Mrs. Chantrey, a client of Mr. Drew, to vacation at her cottage in a picturesque seaside town. Carson Drew has promised to join his daughter, but fails to arrive. The alarming disappearance of Mr. Drew and the odd circumstances surrounding his rescue are only the start of a series of highly dan Nancy becomes involved in a maze of mystery when she accepts an invitation from Mrs. Chantrey, a client of Mr. Drew, to vacation at her cottage in a picturesque seaside town. Carson Drew has promised to join his daughter, but fails to arrive. The alarming disappearance of Mr. Drew and the odd circumstances surrounding his rescue are only the start of a series of highly dangerous adventures for Nancy and her friends Bess and George. Mrs. Chantrey's story about a nearby cliffside cave reputedly inhabited by a ghost intrigues Nancy and she decides to investigate. Several frightened townspeople claim to have seen an apparition and heard the weird sounds of a tolling bell just before water rushes from the cave. What Nancy discovers and how she outwits a ring of swindlers will thrill all admirers of the courageous young detective


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Nancy becomes involved in a maze of mystery when she accepts an invitation from Mrs. Chantrey, a client of Mr. Drew, to vacation at her cottage in a picturesque seaside town. Carson Drew has promised to join his daughter, but fails to arrive. The alarming disappearance of Mr. Drew and the odd circumstances surrounding his rescue are only the start of a series of highly dan Nancy becomes involved in a maze of mystery when she accepts an invitation from Mrs. Chantrey, a client of Mr. Drew, to vacation at her cottage in a picturesque seaside town. Carson Drew has promised to join his daughter, but fails to arrive. The alarming disappearance of Mr. Drew and the odd circumstances surrounding his rescue are only the start of a series of highly dangerous adventures for Nancy and her friends Bess and George. Mrs. Chantrey's story about a nearby cliffside cave reputedly inhabited by a ghost intrigues Nancy and she decides to investigate. Several frightened townspeople claim to have seen an apparition and heard the weird sounds of a tolling bell just before water rushes from the cave. What Nancy discovers and how she outwits a ring of swindlers will thrill all admirers of the courageous young detective

30 review for Mystery of the Tolling Bell

  1. 5 out of 5

    Primrose Jess

    This in the original text might be a favorite. I was appropriately worried at the stressful parts, intrigued with the colloquialisms of when it was written, interested in the dynamics between each of the characters, and always thrilled when Nancy solves the mystery and saves the day.. and in this case a Paul Revere bell too. I especially found this one interesting when Ned scolds Nancy for her thoughtlessness. He calls her out on reckless behavior that would have gotten her killed had it not b This in the original text might be a favorite. I was appropriately worried at the stressful parts, intrigued with the colloquialisms of when it was written, interested in the dynamics between each of the characters, and always thrilled when Nancy solves the mystery and saves the day.. and in this case a Paul Revere bell too. I especially found this one interesting when Ned scolds Nancy for her thoughtlessness. He calls her out on reckless behavior that would have gotten her killed had it not been for George. She listens too. It's a great mystery but there seem to be undercurrents in the relationships between Nancy and her father, Nancy and Ned, and Nancy and her friends-Bess/George. I completed missed this in the revised text and was also too young to catch all of it as well.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Whitney

    Unlike some Nancy Drew adventures where the title has almost nothing to do with the plot, this one absolutely keeps its promise. You want to learn about bells? Well, settle in, because it's a wild life for bell enthusiasts. Immerse yourself in the pages and catch the bell bug! Nancy and her pals travel to a resort town and encounter a man who admits, "I'm a stranger to this town myself. Came here looking for a bell . . . Not an ordinary bell . . . A Paul Revere bell. . . . Old bells are valuable Unlike some Nancy Drew adventures where the title has almost nothing to do with the plot, this one absolutely keeps its promise. You want to learn about bells? Well, settle in, because it's a wild life for bell enthusiasts. Immerse yourself in the pages and catch the bell bug! Nancy and her pals travel to a resort town and encounter a man who admits, "I'm a stranger to this town myself. Came here looking for a bell . . . Not an ordinary bell . . . A Paul Revere bell. . . . Old bells are valuable as antiques." And later, when the girls take a boat trip around the rocky shore, they almost lose their lives after hearing a mysterious "warning bell." While walking in town, they hear a "tinkle of a little bell," attached to the cart of a mysterious, shifty seller of counterfeit cosmetics. Regarding bells, Nancy's new bell expert friend explains, "No two ring alike. Some are high-pitched, some low, some have beautiful tone quality, and others are so harsh they insult your ears. Bells are with us from the cradle to the grave; they rejoice in our victories and toll our sorrows. . . ." He then goes on to ask, "Know how to make a big bell? . . . First you make a mold, and that takes a good many weeks if the bell is to be a perfect one. Then you pour in the hot, liquid metal. You have to be very careful . . . " Bells, bells, blah blah . . . "The first bell foundry in this country was established by the Hanks family, ancestors of Abraham Lincoln on his mother's side . . . " See what I mean. Nonstop bells. Do not dare try a drinking game with this book! Take a drink every time a bell is mentioned, you might die. Bonus non-bell related tidbits I enjoyed: A yummy "tearoom" is the setting for some of the plot here. It's a kind of place that I would go to everyday, if it existed. Nancy, while attempting to solve her latest case, also takes a part-time job, unpaid, at this "luncheon" place, looking for clues and talking to the bell man. The shop is called Salsandee. Sal = salad. Sand = sandwich. Dee = dandee! But do not ask for salsa. That would be gauche. Nancy's personality is unusually snarky in this book. Maybe it's because she gets gassed by some sort of drug and has a dream about elves? She does. It's weird. And she loses patience with her friends at least once. "What's the matter with A.H?" George cried furiously. "He can't go off and leave us stranded here!" "Maybe he can't, but that's exactly what he's doing!" Nancy replied, as you can obviously see, you utter moron, is conveyed by her tone. No, Nancy would never call names, but it seems like she often wants to behave badly in this book, which is really something to behold!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Dean Cummings

    “If you are going to steal bells, plug your ears.” – Mongolian Proverb Mrs. Chantry, of the Town of Candleton on White Cap Bay had been swindled out of quite a bit of money. She’s a close friend and occasional client of Nancy’s father, the well known and respected criminal lawyer from River Heights, Mr. Carson Drew. Carson has already agreed to take on Mrs. Chantry’s case, an effort to recover her lost funds. Carson was to fly out to White Cap Bay within the week. And it was just after she’d made “If you are going to steal bells, plug your ears.” – Mongolian Proverb Mrs. Chantry, of the Town of Candleton on White Cap Bay had been swindled out of quite a bit of money. She’s a close friend and occasional client of Nancy’s father, the well known and respected criminal lawyer from River Heights, Mr. Carson Drew. Carson has already agreed to take on Mrs. Chantry’s case, an effort to recover her lost funds. Carson was to fly out to White Cap Bay within the week. And it was just after she’d made arrangements with Carson that Mrs. Chantry remembered how much the Lawyer’s daughter Nancy enjoyed solving a mystery. “Perhaps the young detective could join her father on this trip?” She thought with a smile on her face. Armed with the idea of the perfect mystery for the young detective to solve, Mrs. Chantry writes a letter to Nancy telling her of the, “Ghostly, and unexplainable things happening along the coast of White Cap Bay.” “Would you like to come to visit, and perhaps look into this mystery?” she asks in the letter. Nancy soon replies, and with enthusiasm. She says she’d love to visit and was intrigued by the idea of exploring the coastline for clues. She added a suggestion that since the terrain of investigation was so difficult to navigate on foot that she could use the assistance of a couple of her friends, “Would it be okay if I invited them along?” Mrs. Chantry replies that she would be delighted to have all three as guests. That’s when Nancy telephones her friend George Fayne, asking if she was available, and wished to help with the mystery of the White Cap Bay coastal region, while enjoying a visit to a picturesque seaside town. There are cliffs and caves to be explored, Nancy explained, smiling to herself even as she cradles the receiver in her hand. As Nancy assumed, George responded with gusto, saying she couldn’t wait to go, while energetically advocating that her cousin Bess Marvin as well. Nancy remembered how much help Bess had been on their past sleuthing endeavors, and, in general, what charming company she was. It was agreed that George should ask Bess if she were available and wish to join them in pursuing answers to this riddle. It turned out that Bess was available an as with her cousin George, was anticipating the excitement and adventure that an excursion to this place of secrets promised. Soon they depart on a driving journey that is highlighted with the devouring of a sumptuous seafood meal and an eerie encounter with a woman selling wares of questionable quality from a perfume cart. Nancy, George and Bess then see their destination in the distance, “The car rounded a sharp bend and the girls catch their first glimpse of White Cap Bay… Never before had they seen such a beautiful stretch of water. Once a fishing town, the little Village of Candleton was now a fashionable summer resort with gleaming white cottages and fine hotels. Mrs. Chantrey’s attractive home stood some distance from the beach, just beyond the business section of the town. Nancy pulled to a stop in front of the house.” The three girls were greeted by June Barber, a woman of about fifty who told them that she lived with Mrs. Chantrey, who was not home just now, but working at the tearoom that she owned and operated. “Has my father arrived?” Nancy asked. “Not yet,” June replied. “I guess he was delayed,” Nancy mused, hoping nothing was wrong. After freshening up, the girls made their way to the tearoom, and as they arrived, they saw the charming sign, “The Salsandee Shop.” They entered, noticing how busy the establishment was, surprised to note that there was only one, very busy and overwhelmed waitress serving many customers who were waiting with increasing impatience. Nancy stopped the waitress to inquire about Mrs. Chantrey. “She’s in the kitchen,” the waitress replied, “But don’t bother her now…unless it’s important.” Nancy inquired as to why there was so little help, to which the waitress sighed, “Two of our girls failed to show up today, and we’re nearly frantic trying to serve everyone.” Reviewer’s Note: And that’s when one of my favorite Nancy Drew “characteristics” shined through… “Why don’t we pitch in and help?” Nancy suggested to George and Bess, “We’ve waited tables before…” “It would be fun!” George agreed enthusiastically. The three then made their way to the kitchen where Mrs. Chantrey was busily trying to cook all the meals. Nancy said hello and that she and the two other girls would like to help. After quick introductions were done, Mrs. Chantry said, “I can’t put you girls to work the first moment you arrive! Why, you’re my guests!” “We’d like to do it,” Bess speaks up. “Then I won’t protest any longer,” Mrs. Chantry concedes, “You’re a gift straight from heaven!” She proclaims, then tied aprons on the three girls. George remained in the kitchen while Nancy and Bess were sent to wait on tables. Hours later, the last of the patrons left, and Mrs. Chantrey sat down to a meal with Nancy, George and Bess. Nancy reported that she’d called her father’s office and was worried because the secretary said she thought he’d left for Candleton some time ago… It was rare for her reliable father to be out of touch for any length of time without word to anyone. This was a deeply concerning development… And it was the first of many abnormal occurrences that would happen while Nancy, George and Bess were at White Cap Bay, some of these included: Message fragment clues, ancient artifacts, bell-tolling ghosts, bizarre dreams, being drugged by sleeping powder, cobweb ridden fully set dining tables, a stock scam and some of the most unique and wonderful place names, (i.e. “Whistling Oyster Cove.”) The pace was brisk, the mystery intriguing. Nancy Drew and her friends at their best...one more time.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Olivia

     "Nancy becomes involved in another mystery when she accepts an invitation from Mrs. Chantry, a client of Mr. Drew, to vacation at her cottage in a picturesque seaside town. Carson Drew has promised to join his daughter, but fails to arrive. The alarming disappearance of Mr. Drew and the odd circumstances surrounding his rescue are only the start of a series of highly dangerous adventures for Nancy and her friends Bess and George. Mrs. Chantrey's story about a nearby cliff side cave reputedly in  "Nancy becomes involved in another mystery when she accepts an invitation from Mrs. Chantry, a client of Mr. Drew, to vacation at her cottage in a picturesque seaside town. Carson Drew has promised to join his daughter, but fails to arrive. The alarming disappearance of Mr. Drew and the odd circumstances surrounding his rescue are only the start of a series of highly dangerous adventures for Nancy and her friends Bess and George. Mrs. Chantrey's story about a nearby cliff side cave reputedly inhabited by a ghost intrigues Nancy and she decides to investigate. Several frightened townspeople claim to have seen an apparition and heard the weird sounds of a tolling bell just before water rushes from the cave. Will Nancy discover the true cause of these mysterious occurrences?" I've read the original text version of this book twice and I really enjoyed it. However I've never read the revised. I understand the differences are minuscule, if this is true then I doubt I'll notice them since I haven't read the other version in quite awhile. I don't have very much interest in reading this version but since I'm getting rid of my copy I decided I might as well read it while I have the chance. - I think the whole hotel scene didn't work very well in the 1970's setting. I think the scene worked well in the 1940's setting of the original as it had a very noir type vibe to it. Particularly the part where Nancy steps away from her fathers room for a minute just to return and find no evidence her father had ever been there. That was very Hitchcock-esque. - I know a lot of people think Nancy's strange dream is a little too ridiculous but I love that part! I know that I've had dreams where things happening around me worked their way into my dream so I think its very plausible. Also Nancy waking up in a ditch is so mysterious. I'm just surprised she wasn't freaking out! Imagine falling asleep one place and waking up in a ditch, whether she was moved there or had stumbled their herself, that would be very unnerving. You can read the rest of this review at VintageGirlsBooks.blogspot.com You can see all the illustrations from this book at www.pinterest.com/Nancydrewart Original review: I know a lot of people don't like this one because of Nancy weird fume induced dream but I love it. I think it's exciting and has a good location. I like Nancy helping at the restaurant and climbing up onto the cave and really all of it.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Ellen

    A bit convoluted, but still enjoyable.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Mainon

    Reread for the 2017 Nancy Drew Sleuths convention in Ogunquit, Maine. So fun! My favorite part: semi-conscious Nancy dreams she's carried around by little brown elves. Though the dastardly cosmetics-cart salesperson is pretty funny too. Comparing the original and revised texts side by side: so much wonderful description is lost in the latter! Definitely recommend OT. Reread for the 2017 Nancy Drew Sleuths convention in Ogunquit, Maine. So fun! My favorite part: semi-conscious Nancy dreams she's carried around by little brown elves. Though the dastardly cosmetics-cart salesperson is pretty funny too. Comparing the original and revised texts side by side: so much wonderful description is lost in the latter! Definitely recommend OT.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Whitney

    ~3.75~ This was a quick and easy read. But it wasn't what I thought it was going to be. Yes, the mystery was a little predictable (it is also a middle-grade book) and the writing was not my style. But Ned. I know. I know. Whitney always has to talk about love. Ned was a sweet and caring boy who would go anywhere with Nancy no matter what. He would always be there to make sure that she was safe and it was really adorable. I would probably read another Nancy Drew again but (again it being middle-g ~3.75~ This was a quick and easy read. But it wasn't what I thought it was going to be. Yes, the mystery was a little predictable (it is also a middle-grade book) and the writing was not my style. But Ned. I know. I know. Whitney always has to talk about love. Ned was a sweet and caring boy who would go anywhere with Nancy no matter what. He would always be there to make sure that she was safe and it was really adorable. I would probably read another Nancy Drew again but (again it being middle-grade) didn't really suit my needs as a reader. But overall it was a good book.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Laura (Reading is a Doing Word)

    This was a slight mixed up mystery. Nancy is meant to be helping her father investigate for a woman swindled out of phoney stock. She ends up involved in a local mystery surrounding a ghost in a cave and a tolling bell. There's a lot of going between the cave and the bell and then a fraud with a dodgy make up company. Ned pops up throughout. All in all a bit random and not one of my favourites. This was a slight mixed up mystery. Nancy is meant to be helping her father investigate for a woman swindled out of phoney stock. She ends up involved in a local mystery surrounding a ghost in a cave and a tolling bell. There's a lot of going between the cave and the bell and then a fraud with a dodgy make up company. Ned pops up throughout. All in all a bit random and not one of my favourites.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Kavita

    My uncle bought this book for me at a station en route from Delhi to Chennai (or vice-versa, I don't remember perfectly) when I was very young. I had already finished reading the book I had brought from home halfway through the journey (around 36 hours!) and was getting bored. So I jumped at the first book stall and since then, have always loved this book. At a visit to my parents' last month, I picked this up and began to read. I still love this! Nancy's father is investigating a case of fraud. My uncle bought this book for me at a station en route from Delhi to Chennai (or vice-versa, I don't remember perfectly) when I was very young. I had already finished reading the book I had brought from home halfway through the journey (around 36 hours!) and was getting bored. So I jumped at the first book stall and since then, have always loved this book. At a visit to my parents' last month, I picked this up and began to read. I still love this! Nancy's father is investigating a case of fraud. Meanwhile, one of his clients invite him and his daughter to stay with her. Nancy brings along Bess and George and the trio have a great time. Turns out, there are mysteries galore to be investigated in the sleepy seaside town. A great tolling bell, a ghost, a mysterious perfume seller, and a crazy bell collector, all lend mystery and fun to Mystery of the Tolling Bell. Halfway through the book, I had to return home. Unfortunately, I forgot to pack the book, and had to download a Kindle version just to finish it. Interestingly, the part I had left off was completely changed. In my book, a fisherman throws a net on Nancy to save her from drowning. In the e-version, Nancy has to save the fisherman. Wonder why they changed this. The book version also had the n-word, which was later changed. I rarely read different editions of the same book at the same time, so this was indeed a funny experience. I enjoyed this trip down memory lane and the story is still readable and fun. Unlike my other childhood favourite, The Secret of Red Gate Farm, whose plot I pulled apart as an adult, Mystery of the Tolling Bell still doesn't make cringe. For it's genre, it's a fun book!

  10. 5 out of 5

    John Yelverton

    Great Nancy Drew book, as Nancy tries to discover what may or may not have happened to her father.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Darinda

    Nancy's father has been kidnapped. Good thing she's a great amateur sleuth and can solve any mystery thrown her way. Fast and entertaining read. Nancy's father has been kidnapped. Good thing she's a great amateur sleuth and can solve any mystery thrown her way. Fast and entertaining read.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Natalie Cannon

    My girlfriend and I had a dose of nostalgia, and we decided to read some Nancy Drew novels. While I read a modest 5 Nancy Drew books as a child, my partner read as many as she could get her hands on, so this reading project has been interesting for the both of us. I come to the page with virgin eyes while she re-visits the tales that carried her through childhood with the seasoned lens of adulthood. In other words, a lot of "wtf really?" has been going on. As far as THE MYSTERY OF THE TOLLING BEL My girlfriend and I had a dose of nostalgia, and we decided to read some Nancy Drew novels. While I read a modest 5 Nancy Drew books as a child, my partner read as many as she could get her hands on, so this reading project has been interesting for the both of us. I come to the page with virgin eyes while she re-visits the tales that carried her through childhood with the seasoned lens of adulthood. In other words, a lot of "wtf really?" has been going on. As far as THE MYSTERY OF THE TOLLING BELL's plot, Mrs. Chantrey, formerly a woman of beachside leisure, pours a sizeable chunk of her savings into a very bad investment, forcing her to open a tea-and-sandwhich shop in order to get by. She contacts Nancy's father, Mr. Drew, to see if she has any legal options to get her money back. Mr. Drew recruits our detective Nancy, her prim friend Bess, and her tomboy friend George to help cheer Mrs. Chantrey up, enticing them into a vacation by the seaside rife with a mysterious cave, ghost, and bell-ringing. Reading this novel, I can see why children like Nancy Drew. The language is fairy tale simple and matter of fact. Lots of telling rather than showing, as writers say. The cast of characters is wide enough that everyone has someone to identify with, though Nancy is the true, fleshed out star. As promised, the mystery is a good one, taking lots of twists and turns. The perpetrators are obvious, so the book spends most of its time expanding on their dastardly scheme. There's lots of White People Get Upset That They Bought A Stupid Thing, which is fine stakes for a children's book. While a child me would have swallowed this tale hook, line, and sinker, adult me was puzzled on several fronts. While Nancy Drew basically exists outside of time, I was given to understand that these books had been updated to modern sensibilities of treating all people like human beings. It could have been worse, I suppose, but the narrator did their job of narrating with a huge helping of xenophobia (lots of mistrust of foreigners), racism (the entire cast is WASP; the criminals use brownface to appear "exotic"), and misogyny (apparently only sex workers wear make up in the Drew universe). There was also some extremely tone deaf "ah, yes, let's go off to a remote location with a strange old man," AND THEN "he left us stranded in the remote location but we'll forgive him and keep acting like he's a good guy." Which is No. That would not happen in any decade. I also wanted the narrator to dwell more on certain points. Ned Nickerson acts as the Muscle, which had me giggling and tender-hearted. Over the course of the story, a few dances happened, but all together they perhaps lasted 5 sentences. I realize, like, kids read this, but no hand holding? No looking into each other's eyes? No fuzzy, happy feelings in their hearts? Is Ned only there to be the Muscle and convince everyone that Nancy is straight? Conversely, there are points where Nancy is "deeply frightened" and yet acts not at all like a frightened person, what with all her limbs still working and her brain being still full of common sense. What kept the book at 3 stars was the good mystery, the avoidance of YA cliche, and the tiny bits of queer subtext I picked up. Mrs. Chantrey, a widow, lives with fellow widow June Barber. The narrator embraces George with her tomboyish ways, letting her wear masculine clothes, punch criminals, and do some hard thinking without condemnation. As a parent, Mr. Drew is an asset to the investigation and respectful of his daughter instead of totally oblivious and useless. Nancy is the epitome of level-headed self-sufficiency, but doesn't shy away from calling on friends to help. She is allowed to be weak and strong, a full human being. These elements saved the novel and encouraged me to pick up one or two more of the series. Buckle up, folks.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Moonkiszt

    Nancy's fame is traveling throughout the land, and this victim mentions that she has heard of Nancy's abilities to untangle mysteries. Additionally, Dad Drew pulls her into a mystery and then he falls victim to bad guys (in this case a woman with an overwhelming scent and the ability to move his unconscious self to the next room and be missed by those looking for him . . . ?!) and Nancy must come to his rescue. I worry about this man, especially as a Dad. Glad Nancy didn't have sibs. She would h Nancy's fame is traveling throughout the land, and this victim mentions that she has heard of Nancy's abilities to untangle mysteries. Additionally, Dad Drew pulls her into a mystery and then he falls victim to bad guys (in this case a woman with an overwhelming scent and the ability to move his unconscious self to the next room and be missed by those looking for him . . . ?!) and Nancy must come to his rescue. I worry about this man, especially as a Dad. Glad Nancy didn't have sibs. She would have been their caretaker! Worthy tale with cliffhangers at the end of each (count 'em, each) chapter, and a bit more energy than some of the other books. There is language that is imbeded and racist - Juno is a servant and early on it mentions that she is black (". . .a young Negro maid. . ."), and later when the girls are getting ready to go to Bald Head Cave and they mention that to Juno, we are told: "The maid's eyes rolled in fright when she learned the girls intended to go there. . ." This bugged me and felt off. . .if she was a white maid, I'm pretty sure that scene would have been described differently in spite of the fact that EVERY woman I know has dramatic eye-rolling down by the time she is three years old. I never noticed any of this stuff when I read these as a kid. I don't think, tho, just because I wasn't overtly aware of it that it didn't shape some part of my thinking. Hmm. 3 stars. Ned tries to talk seriously in this one and is good-natured when: "Nancy merely smiled sweetly, and walked out into the sunshine."

  14. 5 out of 5

    Katja

    5 stars & 5/10 hearts. This one ended up having a really different feel for me, which I appreciated. It had definitely breezy, beachy, summery vibes. I loved the little teahouse! The mystery was quite intriguing. I always like mysteries that split into various different things but touch somewhere and this one was just that. Although, seriously... is Carson Drew UNABLE to not get drugged & kidnapped?? Like, you'd think he'd get smart to it now... idk?? I liked Mr. Drew but sometimes... he's just 5 stars & 5/10 hearts. This one ended up having a really different feel for me, which I appreciated. It had definitely breezy, beachy, summery vibes. I loved the little teahouse! The mystery was quite intriguing. I always like mysteries that split into various different things but touch somewhere and this one was just that. Although, seriously... is Carson Drew UNABLE to not get drugged & kidnapped?? Like, you'd think he'd get smart to it now... idk?? I liked Mr. Drew but sometimes... he's just a little weak. Maybe it's the different authors' faults, because sometimes he's awesome. Anyways. End of mini rant. Bottom line is, I enjoyed the mystery, particularly the part about the bell and the cave...

  15. 5 out of 5

    Maria

    Nancy, Bess, and George travel to a charming seaside town to stay with Mrs. Chantrey, a client of Mr. Drew's. When they arrive, they learn that Mrs. Chantrey also owns a lovely cafe but needs help, so they lend a helping hand as wait staff. They also encounter another mystery with a tolling bell that seems to warn of dangerous high tides but is also accompanied by a ghost. There's lots of danger as usual, but Nancy's level head makes her seem much more mature than her perennial eighteen years. N Nancy, Bess, and George travel to a charming seaside town to stay with Mrs. Chantrey, a client of Mr. Drew's. When they arrive, they learn that Mrs. Chantrey also owns a lovely cafe but needs help, so they lend a helping hand as wait staff. They also encounter another mystery with a tolling bell that seems to warn of dangerous high tides but is also accompanied by a ghost. There's lots of danger as usual, but Nancy's level head makes her seem much more mature than her perennial eighteen years. Ned also makes an appearance and he's so hopelessly in love with Nancy but she seems oblivious to his deeper feelings. But he still hangs around and keeps coming back for more!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Mckenna

    ah really good. the plot is kinda wild, so much that they needed to cram a whole explanation in at the end, but ned just shows up randomly every few pages and i love that guy! he’s so good!! five stars for stellar ned nickerson content and also the old man who loves bells so much, “If i should hear a bell ringing, there’s no telling what I’d do” is such a funny line he’s so iconic.

  17. 4 out of 5

    kenzie

    the most buck wild nancy drew mystery i’ve read

  18. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    Meh. The story didn't grab me as much as some of the others in this series. Interesting enough but glad it was a short read. Meh. The story didn't grab me as much as some of the others in this series. Interesting enough but glad it was a short read.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Laura Ireland

    This one is much more intriguing than some of the others! And you certainly learn a lot about bells

  20. 4 out of 5

    LLD

    Pretty fun to read an old school book! So simple and innocent.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Celeste

    nancy drew and ned nickerson are wlw/mlm solidarity at its finest.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Spencer (Sphynx Reads)

    As my introduction to Nancy Drew, this was quite fun and I will definitely read more! The mystery was interesting and there were more threads to the story than I anticipated. Aside from the info dump at the end, I thought this was very well-paced. Even though these are companion books I feel like I should have started with book 1 since for some of the characters, I had no idea who they were meant to be in Nancy's life. Overall a good book, didn't exactly blow me away, but it was a good time. As my introduction to Nancy Drew, this was quite fun and I will definitely read more! The mystery was interesting and there were more threads to the story than I anticipated. Aside from the info dump at the end, I thought this was very well-paced. Even though these are companion books I feel like I should have started with book 1 since for some of the characters, I had no idea who they were meant to be in Nancy's life. Overall a good book, didn't exactly blow me away, but it was a good time.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Bargain Sleuth Book Reviews

    For this and other book reviews, visit www.bargain-sleuth.com The Mystery of the Tolling Bell was written in 1946 and revised in 1973. We refer to these as Original Text (OT) and Revised Text (RT). The OTs occasionally offer up some cringe-worthy racism and stereotypes, and this volume is no different. A woman, “obviously of foreign birth” is changed to “appeared to be foreign” in the revised text which is no better. Little people are called dwarves and elves interchangeably. In the OT, the bad g For this and other book reviews, visit www.bargain-sleuth.com The Mystery of the Tolling Bell was written in 1946 and revised in 1973. We refer to these as Original Text (OT) and Revised Text (RT). The OTs occasionally offer up some cringe-worthy racism and stereotypes, and this volume is no different. A woman, “obviously of foreign birth” is changed to “appeared to be foreign” in the revised text which is no better. Little people are called dwarves and elves interchangeably. In the OT, the bad guy, Grumper, is described as a hunchback with a distorted face, ala Quasimodo from The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Luckily that was taken out of the RT. At least I think it was; to be honest, I just read the beginning couple of chapters and the last few chapters to see if there were any major revisions. The illustration of Grumper in the RT shows a perfectly normal bad guy. That being said, if you can get past those issues, The Mystery of the Tolling Bell is a good mystery. If Nancy, Bess and George had to drive a long way to get to the seaside resort, how is it that Ned just happens to be in the area? In the early OTs, Emerson College is some distance from River Heights, so that might make sense. In the RT, Ned happens to be in the same seaside town selling insurance to some of his parents’ friends. (selling insurance is one of several summer jobs Ned has in the series). But Carson Drew is going to fly to this town from New York. In the OTs, River Heights is supposedly in Iowa, then later Ohio because that’s where ghostwriter Mildred Wirt Benson lived. In the RTs, River Heights seems to be in New Jersey or upstate New York, because that’s where publisher and ghostwriter Harriet Stratemeyer Adams lived. In either case, Ned’s appearance is odd but ultimately needed, because he needs to save George and Nancy and help rescue Carson. I laughed a little when Nancy, Bess, and George think it would be “fun” to wait on tables at the Salsandee restaurant. I’m not sure where Nancy and the girls got the necessary skills to wait on tables in their privileged lives. Waiting tables is not as easy as it looks, and many waiters and waitresses would not necessarily call it fun. It’s a job. But it’s no surprise Nancy is good at it, because she seems to be good at everything, and picks up a mystery of a missing bell through her waiting on an elderly man. Which reminds me, there’s quite an info dump on the history of bells and bell-making in the story. I always appreciate when children’s fiction authors weave some factual information into a story so kids learn as well as be entertained. Most Nancy Drew fans seem to prefer the OTs to the RTs, but the RTs are what I grew up with. This is my first time reading the OT and I have to say, while the writing overall is better, there’s so much extraneous “stuff” jammed into the story that this former journalist wants the writer to get to the point. For instance, in the OT, Bess bitches and moans about how they’re going to a seaside resort town and how much she hates seafood. For a couple of pages, Bess just can’t seem to express enough how much she’d prefer a burger over yucky fish (I have to agree; hate seafood. I’m always starving on Fridays during Lent because of it). However, in the RT, that whole scene is taken out, and the girls just dine at an Inn where they served puffed shrimp and other seafood delicacies. Some say that the writing of the RTs is “choppy” because all the extraneous stuff is taken out, but I seem to prefer the more succinct RTs because of it. When I read adult fiction, my eyes glaze over at long descriptions of settings. What on earth is the mysterious sweet smelling liquid or fumes that makes people pass out and hallucinate? Nancy is drugged with it, Carson is drugged with it when a lady sharing a cab spills some onto his lapel (I’m trying to picture how this could actually happen), Nancy is almost drugged with it again, George is partially drugged with it but she realizes what it is and gets out of the room before she succumbs. That’s some smart villains, who seem to be immune to the poison themselves. Let’s not forget that George, ever the clutz while constantly being described as athletic, twists her ankle at one point. And she and Nancy are nearly drowned when water comes rushing through the cave they are in. George hurts her arm and finds it hard to swim, so the ever-timid Bess has to save her. There’s plenty of sleuthing going on in The Mystery of the Tolling Bell, not the least of which is rescuing Carson Drew from some shady kidnappers who have him holed up at a seedy hotel. There’s also the exploration of the cave where the mysterious tolling bell is, and the abandoned cabin on top of the cliff above the cave. Nancy and Ned end up finding the Tolling Bell in the cave, and somehow, without tools, Nancy is able to just grab the bell and take it out of it’s spot amongst the rocks.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Danielle

    (3.6/5): One of the villains is named "Grumper" and Carson Drew is incapacitated by Ambien for 80% of the book (3.6/5): One of the villains is named "Grumper" and Carson Drew is incapacitated by Ambien for 80% of the book

  25. 5 out of 5

    Ashley

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. What's better than a lot of Ned action? NOTHING. But a close second is NANCY GETTING DRUGGED UP AND THINKING ELVES ARE RESPONSIBLE. Nancy and the chums are off to Candleton. Nancy's dad is working on a swindling case, and his good buddy (whose name I can't remember) was totes ripped off by an asshole selling worthless stock. When Nancy gets there, her dad is nowhere to be found, even though he should have been there, and so Nancy freaks out. But! Mystery alert. A nearby cave is haunted by a ghostl What's better than a lot of Ned action? NOTHING. But a close second is NANCY GETTING DRUGGED UP AND THINKING ELVES ARE RESPONSIBLE. Nancy and the chums are off to Candleton. Nancy's dad is working on a swindling case, and his good buddy (whose name I can't remember) was totes ripped off by an asshole selling worthless stock. When Nancy gets there, her dad is nowhere to be found, even though he should have been there, and so Nancy freaks out. But! Mystery alert. A nearby cave is haunted by a ghostly figure who warns people off by ringing a tolling bell (title alert!) and then sending a big ol' wave of water through! The Notorious NBG investigate and almost drown, and then Nancy climbs up on a cliff, and... like, swoons. And has this dreamy impression that some elves picked her up and walked off with her. 'Cause she's drugged. Secondary mystery alert! A hella suspicious "French" lady is selling Mon Coeur cosmetics. Bess buys some, because Bess is the dupe of the group, but they ain't great cosmetics/perfumes. Also NED'S STAYING NEARBY, NO BIG. It is the flimsiest explanation ever and I love it. Nancy and Ned go on several dates, including but not limited to dinner and dancing, a "long drive in the country" (this is 1946, so crazy reunion sex because he's finally back from the war????), and clue-finding. Nancy receives a call that her father's at a super sketch motel a few towns over and I love her pure disgust when walking into it and thinking, "Dad would NEVER stay at such a cheap place." But he is there! After a bunch of shenanigans, Nancy and Ned finally get Carson out of there so he can get better. There's a lot of Ned pacing with nervousness when he can't find Nancy and threatening to punch anyone who prevents him from getting to his Lady Love. It's nice. So, Carson's case involves the sale of Mon Coeur stock, so their mysteries overlap. A guy comes up to the house and says that her father's somewhere and needs her, and Nancy's like "NOPE BITCH NOT FALLING FOR THAT" and he's immediately like "KEEP YOUR NOSE OUT OF OUR BUSINESS LITTLE GIRL" and he drives off but drops a clue. Then Ned comes by and Nancy leaves a note for her friends saying that she's off with Ned, and the chums come home at 2am and find the note and Nancy's not home yet and Bess is like "I wonder if they eloped?" and I'm like YES PLEASE YES MORE OF THIS YES. So Nancy and Ned's car is stranded during a bad storm thanks to a hit and run, and I'm like YES HOW ABOUT ROMANTIC CAR SEX WITH THE RAIN PROVIDING A ROMANTIC BACKDROP but NO, they get a ride back. Because damn it. I can't win. Then Nancy and Ned go investigate the Cave of Romantic Fainting and Nancy half-faints and Ned's like "I got this" and fuckin' bridal-carries her back to the car, and I'm like BEST NANCY/NED SCENE EVER, OR BEST SCENE IN ALL OF FICTION? Anyway. At the end of it, one of the kidnapping elves strands Nancy and a secondary guest star in the cave, which is about to flood, and is like "WE WILL ALL DIE HERE, AHAHAHAHA" and I'm like "shit just got real!" And then NED COMES IN WEARING A GAS MASK AND SAVES THEM. (Did I mention that the kidnapping elf also makes fainting gas? Anyway, yeah.) He even saves the little dork who was about to just take all y'all down with him. So at the end of it, some of the money is recovered for the swindled people and the bad guys are caught, and Ned's like "girl you are a little pirate 'cause you stole mon coeur" and I'm like PLEASE GET MARRIED GUYS, MY HEART CANNOT DEAL WITH ALL THIS JOY. Anyway they're all flirty and it's adorable and also Nancy probably has the Paul Revere bell that was hanging in the cave as a souvenir, after all this. I mean, of course.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Tabi34

    Well, I finished the first 23 books in the series. I'm beginning to find Nancy annoying. She is uber-focused to the extent that she only hangs out with her friends when they can help her solve a mystery. She uses Ned when she needs some muscle. At the end of this book, Ned even makes a comment that he's getting tired of her constant pre-occupation with her sleuthing when they are together. If she doesn't want to have a relationship with the boy - cut him loose already. Times are very different t Well, I finished the first 23 books in the series. I'm beginning to find Nancy annoying. She is uber-focused to the extent that she only hangs out with her friends when they can help her solve a mystery. She uses Ned when she needs some muscle. At the end of this book, Ned even makes a comment that he's getting tired of her constant pre-occupation with her sleuthing when they are together. If she doesn't want to have a relationship with the boy - cut him loose already. Times are very different these days with young adult fiction. By now, since they are 18 they would probably have been sleeping together since book 6 at the latest. These books also make no reference to world events nor do they effect Nancy and her world; granted they have been updated, but still there is no mention of wars, depressions, drugs - anything that would've made this book more realistic at the time they were written. Instead, Nancy and friends are oblivious to anything that is remotely worldly. Nancy is often kidnapped, or man-handled - but she outwits her captives. Today, Nancy would've been raped, assaulted, drugged and tortured. I can't believe that young women, who were the target audience for these books were so naive that they didn't know what could really happen to a young woman alone in the situations Nancy found herself in. Plus, criminals aren't always dumb and definitely a young, naive 18 year old woman is going to outwit two or more captors. These books are a good look back through rose colored glasses to see what we hoped times looked like. We can see what was important and what virtues we wished for our daughters. I think I'll go read a good Ann Rule true-crime book to give myself some equilibrium.

  27. 4 out of 5

    thewestchestarian

    But, wait, what was Tyrox doing that was specifically illegal? In this lesser of the Nancy Drew books, Nancy busts Harry Tyrox for creating knock-offs of expensive perfumes at discount prices. Nancy, the insufferable Ned and her gang frown at such near-do-wellery. Shame! Of course, this activity is not specifically illegal. Entire automobile manufactures (Hyundai) exist well within the law for much the same purpose and every supermarket and drugstore happily and legally display cheap knockoffs o But, wait, what was Tyrox doing that was specifically illegal? In this lesser of the Nancy Drew books, Nancy busts Harry Tyrox for creating knock-offs of expensive perfumes at discount prices. Nancy, the insufferable Ned and her gang frown at such near-do-wellery. Shame! Of course, this activity is not specifically illegal. Entire automobile manufactures (Hyundai) exist well within the law for much the same purpose and every supermarket and drugstore happily and legally display cheap knockoffs of branded items right on the same shelf as their progenitors. So why does Tyrox go the trouble of knocking people out (and, boy, an anesthetizing perfume would be impossible to keep on the shelves if Mon Coer just produced that instead) and kidnapping them to avoid their revealing of his scheme which is neither nefarious or even particularly immoral? Carolyn Keene, or at least the folks who ghost wrote her, have shown Occupy Wall Street tendencies in the past and one can infer that "The Tolling Bell" mystery has a tinge of anti-capitalism to it. That and the central conceit that a bell gets stuck in an aperture in an old pirate cave that widens until it tolls (instead of just rattles around when the water hits it) doesn't quite live up to being the big reveal after 300 pages of Keene's pedestrian writing. In short, if you are not doing the full Nancy Drew tour you can skip this one.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    What can I say? Every once in a while a girl needs her Nancy.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Thomas Santomartino

    A New Twist This book was a bit different than others in the series to date. The setting was interesting and Nancy's compassion for the problems of other comes shining through again with equal measures of mystery, action, and adventure coming in. Fans of the series will find this an entertaining story. A New Twist This book was a bit different than others in the series to date. The setting was interesting and Nancy's compassion for the problems of other comes shining through again with equal measures of mystery, action, and adventure coming in. Fans of the series will find this an entertaining story.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Greta

    This has got all the elements of a great Nancy Drew: interesting gothic (albiet subtle) locale, camp, funny villians, and brushes with darker elements of female experience related to cosmetics. This book gets high marks for atmospheric goth ..and last but not least the sound of the tolling bell.

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