I was excited to get Nancy Drew graphic novels #20 and #21 High School Musical Mystery from Papercutz! 😀 I’d been wanting to read them for a while! I like Nancy, George, and Bess, and the Dana Girls, Jean and Louise, and the sisters’ two friends, Teri and Gale. Before reading these graphic novels, I knew about the Dana Girls books. I was so happy to find several out-of-print-but-great-condition Dana Girls mysteries. 😀 I love the sisters working together. Good mysteries, similar to Nancy Drew. The two-part Papercutz graphic novels are the first books published for us to read about Nancy and the Dana Girls working together.
I love Nancy’s look starting in the chapter of Part I and in Part II. The artist, Sho Murase, drew her face, hair and clothes really cool. I would love an outfit like Nancy’s in these graphic novels! 😎 Jean and Louise are also very pretty and have beautiful long hair, too. 🙂 Another cool thing about the graphics, the 3D effect, courtesy of Carlos Jose Guzman, made some of the panels look particularly real. 😎
High School Musical Mystery Part I takes place at a private academy that Jean and Louise Dana, Teri, and Gale attend. The fancy stairs, paneling, and decor are really cool. 😎
I don’t like it when a book, like happened in this one, makes mention of an unrelated book or movie, because that instantly dates it and mars the timelessness of it. It doesn’t make it more relatable – mostly it actually detracts.
It’s funny when the two sets of friends were competing on whether Nancy or the Dana Girls are the best detective(s) – except for when it was misleading in what they were saying, none of them actually dealt with “demons” or “witches” – it was proven that wasn’t the case, so that’s inaccurate. 🙄 That there is always a real reason behind the mysteries, rather than made-up fake stuff like ghosts, etc.., is another thing about the Nancy Drew books (and Hardy Boys books) that I love. Back to the funny – while the friends are arguing, in a different part of the school, Nancy and the Dana Girls are sure their friends will hit it off. They come and find otherwise. 😉
I love the idea with Nancy’s friends and the Dana sisters’ friends creating/making a mystery challenge – cool. It was fun seeing the clues as they are presented to Nancy, Jean, and Louise and solving them, too. 😎 As I read, I try to guess what’s going to happen next, and do my best to solve the mystery, too.
Another humorous part was when Nancy, Jean, and Louise all said “say what?” when they found out from their friends it was going to be a musical. 😆 I also enjoyed when Jean and Louise would finish each other’s sentence and also Nancy’s. That’s entertaining for a good part of the time.
So there’s mystery, action, humor, good sleuthing, fun detecting, curious things, and it’s entertaining, along with a few odd-not-sure-why-that’s-in-there-oh-it’s-just-for-the-sake-of-the-mystery parts. To keep this spoiler-free, I will just note that one part about the “clues” in the musical was unbelievable – literally.
Most of the time I thought Nancy did a good job, but I didn’t care for it when she hurt the Dana Girls feelings by losing her patience. 😥 Part of Nancy’s character is how calm, patient and serene she can be. She’s more patient than me, I admit it. I think she would have kept from snapping out in impatience at the Dana sisters – hopefully I would be able to and like I said, Nancy’s more patient than me.
I would say I enjoyed High School Musical Mystery Part I (Book #20) overall better than High School Musical Mystery Part II “The Lost Verse” (#21), although I liked seeing that my suspicions about a culprit from the first book and the basic reason behind it was correct. I like to figure out the mystery as I read and all. There were definitely some creepy elements in Part II. As always, I appreciate the main character’s bravery and perserverance. Again, trying to keep from mentioning any spoilers…..well, one part would have been really cool if it had been done differently when Jean and Louise were “arguing”. If it had been a distraction tactic, not for real arguing at that time then that would have been really cool. Still being careful to avoid spoilers, I’ll just say here that I really liked the character development of one individual at the wrap-up of the mystery who became a nicer person. 😎
My favorite quote of the two-part mystery comes from Nancy Drew Papercutz graphic novel #20 High School Musical Mystery Part I:
The only time you really lose is if you give up! ~ Nancy
For everyone who likes to read books in order, in this case it’s highly recommended. #20 High School Musical Mystery Part 1 and #21 High School Musical Mystery Part II “The Lost Verse” aren’t stand-alones – definitely a two-part story. 🙂
Thank you, Sven and Rachel @ Papercutz! 😀
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