I know that it has been a while since I posted, and my apologies. I finished my Grad class in Young Adult Literature last week, and the week leading up to the end of the semester was rather busy completing papers I had procrastinated in writing. At last I am doing some pleasure reading, and I have been enjoying catching up on some books bought this Fall that I had not read yet.
One of my purchases on Ebay was for 11 of the 12 titles in the Connie Blair series. I have so far finished the first title, The Clue in Blue, and am halfway through the second, The Riddle in Red. This series was written over a ten year period, from 1948 to 1958. It was published by Grosset and Dunlap, and as near as I can tell was not a product of the Stratemeyer Syndicate, but was a series directly developed by Grosset and Dunlap. Published under the pen name of Betsy Allen, eleven of the titles were written by Betty Cavanna. Cavanna was a published author before writing the series, and specialized in teen age romance novels. She did not write the twelfth novel, The Mystery of the Ruby Queens. The author is unknown, though there is some speculation in the series book world as to the author. My collecting buddy Jennifer over at the Series Books for Girls blog has an interesting idea of who that author may be.
The books are fairly quick reads, with the title of a color in each title. They have been criticized that they are anti-feminist, even though Connie is a career gal. The criticisms say that she uses her femininity over brains to solve problems. The books are dated, with a fifties mentality of simplicity oozing from the pages. Nonetheless, I am enjoying them. Simple and fun, and easy to read in a sitting or two.
You can find them on Ebay fairly easily, either in their original format with dust jacket, or the later paperbacks that were issued in the late sixties. Number 12 is a little elusive, and the price is higher as a result. I have held off getting this one, hoping to find a cheaper copy.
If you've never read a Connie Blair Mystery, do so.