Trixie and Honey Do the Hudson River Valley


In a moment of what some call inspiration and others might term temporary insanity, I was hit with a revelation about two of my childhood literary idols:  Nancy Drew and Trixie Belden.

Most of you probably recognize Nancy’s name.  Fewer probably know who Trixie is.  Either way, I will give you a few relevant facts about each of them so you know where I’m coming from.  Please note that these are my recollections from when I read their books and in no way are to be considered definitive profiles of these super-sleuths.

NANCY DREW

  • 18
  • Titian-haired, pretty, well dressed
  • Best friends with Bess and George
  • Drives a snazzy convertible
  • Has a steady boyfriend named Ned
  • Dad is a lawyer
  • Mom is dead
  • Very prim and proper

TRIXIE BELDEN

  • 14
  • Sandy-haired, freckle-faced, a bit of a mess
  • Tomboy
  • Rides horses
  • Best friends with Honey Wheeler
  • In a club called the Bobwhites
  • Has passionate secret relationship with Honey’s adopted brother, Jim Frayne

The last item under Trixie’s profile is wishful thinking on my part.  I was probably 11 or 12 when I started reading Trixie Belden mysteries and definitely well into puberty.  Jim Frayne was described as red-headed and green-eyed and in my adolescent mind, that meant he looked just like the hot, hot, super-hot boy that I rode the school bus with.  And while Trixie and Jim may have never done more than hold hands in the books, in my mind they were totally DOING IT!

So what was this epiphany I had about these two shamuses (a fantastic word that I learned because of these books)?

Trixie was so much more interesting because those books had sex appeal!

Oh don’t roll your eyes!  I am completely right.  Think about it.  Names like Trixie and Honey?  Were they not destined to be strippers?

While Nancy tooled around in that fancy convertible wearing her perfect twin sets and pearls, Trixie was out getting dirty, riding horses and hanging with the boys.  Tell me, who was more likely to get some action?  Yes, I know Trixie was only supposed to be 14.  But reading is about expanding your imagination and in my pubescent mind, she was more mature than that.  She had a horse!  She solved mysteries!

To me, Nancy was frigid and bloodless.  I could no more imagine Ned trying to coax her into the backseat of that convertible than I could envision her not solving the case.

And then there was Nancy’s best friend, George.  Who was a girl.  Growing up when and where I did, I didn’t get the lesbian subtext there so it didn’t intrigue me at all.  But Trixie!  She blatantly lusted after Jim.  In fact, pretty much all of the Bobwhites had the hots for someone else in the group.

I loved both Nancy and Trixie (in a totally platonic way) but it was Trixie’s life that I wanted.  It had passion and romance in addition to the mysteries.

Here’s hoping that Trixie and Honey didn’t end up working the pole somewhere.

(And that Ned was secretly hooking up with Bess, Nancy’s “plump” best friend.  Because the world needs those sexy big girls!)

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