Guest Post

Team Nancy or Team Trixie?

We’re thrilled to have the charming and talented Shari Randall as our Guest Chick today! Her debut novel, Curses Boiled Again, will be released next week (Jan. 30, 2018). Bestselling author Krista Davis describes Shari’s first entry in the Lobster Shack mystery series as “A fun whodunit full of New England Coastal charm and characters who feel like friends.” Take it away, Shari!

Hi Chicks! Thank you so much for asking me to hang out with you today. I’m counting down to the launch of my debut novel, Curses, Boiled Again, on January 30. Cyber champagne for everyone!


When I started writing my book, I had all these preconceived notions about what it meant to be a novelist. Most of these notions were based on old episodes of Murder, She Wrote and Dynasty. I’d wear Joan Collins power suits. I’d have an assistant to handle all those book signings, right? I’d have plenty of time to enjoy a walk around a scenic New England harbor and solve a murder or two and my book would practically write itself, because, honestly, how often did you see JB Fletcher actually writing her book? But, as you Chicks know, those notions have nothing to do with the reality of a writer’s life.

My biggest preconception was that I would write a mystery with a heroine who was just like my favorite childhood detective, Nancy Drew. How I adored Nancy! Not just because of the cool car and her dad’s lax parenting style. She was so resourceful. I’ll never forget how once she needed to write down a license plate number but didn’t have a pen so she used her tube of lipstick instead. She conquered any sport – skiing, skating, sailing – with ease but Nancy never broke a sweat. Over sixty of her adventures formed a beautiful yellow line on my bookshelves.

When I started writing the first book in my Lobster Shack mystery series, I expected that my main character, injured dancer Allie Larkin, would be like Nancy. But something didn’t feel right. No matter how much I wrote and rewrote, something wasn’t working.

Then I went to the Malice Domestic Conference.

I found myself chatting with Mark Baker of the wonderful review site, Carstairs Considers. We talked about formative childhood reading and he asked, “Have you read any Trixie Belden?” The rest of the crowd with us lit up. Obviously, everyone else had been on the Trixie train for a long time.

Read Trixie Belden? That girl who wandered around the covers of her books with uncombed curls and ratty jeans? Nope. Never. But because Mark is such reliable guide to good books, I decided to pick up a Trixie book to see what the fuss was about.

So I checked out the first Trixie adventure, The Secret of the Mansion.

Reader, I loved it.

Yes, Trixie is a younger, less sophisticated sleuth than Nancy. She’s often stuck babysitting younger siblings, and sometimes she doesn’t do that especially well, but I honestly think Nancy would be at a loss babysitting children. They’re so messy. Give her a burly, middle aged bank robber any day.

But it’s not just a difference of age – it’s a difference of style. Nancy never has a hair out of place. Nancy doesn’t make mistakes. Nancy is twinsets and pearls, Trixie is t-shirts and tennis shoes.

Put aside age and the biggest difference for me is this: Nancy thinks before she acts and Trixie usually acts before she thinks things through. Nancy’s crime solving is more cerebral, Trixie’s more impulsive, more physical. That gets her into a lot more trouble, which she then has to get herself out of.

My main character, Allie Larkin? I’d written a Trixie instead of a Nancy.

When I figured that out, the story picked up steam – a lot of steam. My main character is closer in age to Nancy than to Trixie, but Allie’s artistic and imaginative, and a bit impulsive. She leads with her heart. She may be injured, but she is the type that runs toward danger – perfect for a sleuth. She’s not as polished as Nancy, but she’s just as dogged an investigator – and just as resourceful.

Are you Team Nancy or Team Trixie?  Tell me in the comments section. I’ll give away a signed copy of Curses, Boiled Again! to one commenter. I’ll be holding additional giveaways to celebrate the publication of Curses – so be sure to stop by my Facebook Author Page or website to see the details and join the fun. And if you like, you can also check out the Goodreads Giveaway for Curses, Boiled Again! Five lucky readers will win a copy there.

Many thanks for having me here, Chicks!

About the book:

Welcome to the seaside hamlet of Mystic Bay, where the fish is always fresh, the folks are ever-friendly, and murder is on a roll. . .

Allie Larkin was living her dream as a ballet dancer when a bad fall put her out of business. Now she’s back home in Mystic Bay to heal a broken ankle while also helping her dear Aunt Gully get her Lazy Mermaid Lobster Shack off the ground. Nothing would help Gully more than winning the local food festival’s Best Lobster Roll contest. The competition is sure to be killer—especially after one of the contest judges dies after eating a roll from one of Gully’s biggest rivals. 

Soon, all eyes fall on Gully as the prime suspect. Allie may only have one good leg to stand on, but she’s not going to let her aunt go down for a crime she never could have cooked up. Can Allie, along with her devoted crew of friends, family, and customers, find a way to trap the killer and claw herself out of this hard-boiled murder case?

 

When she’s not committing murder (on the page, of course), Shari enjoys walking the beach near her house, traveling and eating the local cuisine, reading, and dancing. She’s currently trying to talk her husband into a tango class. Here’s where you can connect with her. (Be sure to check out her mermaid obsession on Instagram)!

GOODREADS GIVEAWAY https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/264280-curses-boiled-again

FACEBOOK PAGE https://www.facebook.com/sharirandallauthor

WEBSITE http://www.sharirandallauthor.com

INSTAGRAM http://www.instagram.com/sharirandallauthor

 

We think we know what Lisa will say, but what about the rest of you – Team Nancy Drew or Team Trixie Belden? Share in the comments! Shari will send a signed copy of Curses, Boiled Again to one lucky commenter! 

(The winner has been selected in the GIVEAWAY for Curses, Boiled Again! by Shari Randall, who was our guest Chick this week.  Congratulations, Sue Farrell!)

64 thoughts on “Team Nancy or Team Trixie?

  1. Well, here’s the truth from this former Nancy Drew editor: I NEVER read Trixie!! Not sure how that happened, but you know how Nancy can be sometimes (in a very nice way, of course). I was actually Team Bess (Marvin). Shari, I’m so happy that your pub day is almost here–can’t wait!! Huge congrats.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Lisa! I had a feeling you’d be Team Nancy. I was, too, until Mark Baker turned me on to Trixie. Now my loyalties are definitely divided.
      And a big thank you for having me here! I love following all the Chicks’ adventures and reading your terrific books.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Shari, so excited for you! Your book sounds wonderful. I, like Lisa, have never read Trixie. But between you and Mark, I think I have to now. I loved Nancy Drews and read any of her books I could get my hands on. This has led to a lifelong fascination with roadsters, as well as a lifelong dream to ride in the back of one. My neighbor across the street actually has one in his garage! But alas, he’s never offered me a ride. I have to up my hinting.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Hi Ellen, you deserve a ride in that roadster – and I want to see pictures! Tell him you’ll trade him a book for a ride.
      Thank you for having me here and let me congratulate you again on your Lefty nom. The Chicks are going to have one heck of a party at the convention!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. As a kid, I liked Trixie Belden books more than Nancy Drew, for many of the reasons you mention! I have a small Trixie collection of several from childhood and a few with great covers that I’ve found since. I introduced my daughters to her books, but they always seemed to gravitate toward Nancy. I would like to think that some of the characters I’ve written have the best traits from both.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Christine, I saw the review and posted it on my page. Thank you so much! It is such a thrill for a debut author like myself to see her book out in the wild, being reviewed and finding its way into readers’ hands. I’m so grateful that you liked it and took the time to review. It makes a real impact and I’m very grateful.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I never read Trixie and I even grew up in the 60s so who knows why? Hearing what you said and what Mark Baker had said about her, makes me want to go read a Trixie Belden right now lol. Cause personally I am actually a messy hair and jeans kinda girl! But I did love Nancy because she was the only mystery book I knew about at the time. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I have never heard of Trixie! (Don’t tell Mark though.) I feel like my main character looks like Nancy in that she appearances alone, she has it together with the cute outfits and the heels. But she also is running down the street in those heels trying to chase after bad guys without so much of a second thought. So she is definitely a Trixie in Nancy clothing.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Hi Cynthia, Team NanTrix is fine with me. I’m torn, too! It’s just funny that Trixie was never on my radar until a few years ago.
      Thank you for your good wishes and right back atcha! Congratulations on your Lefty nomination! The Chicks are having a good year!

      Liked by 2 people

  6. Shari, it’s starting to look like the Chicks missed the Trixie train at the station — I never read those growing up either! Now I’m really curious to check out Trixie Belden. I’m even MORE excited to read Shari Randall’s debut! Congrats!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I never read Trixie Belden, but you (and Mark) have me convinced. She sounds like my kinda gal!

    Shari, I’m so excited that the big day is almost here! We’re all celebrating with you — and I can’t wait to read CURSES, BOILED AGAIN! Yippee!!

    Liked by 3 people

  8. I’ve heard of Trixie, but never read her. Or, if I did, she made no impresssion on my innocent (at the time) mind.
    But it sounds like she’s more real world than Nancy (do you hear the gasp?). Sounds like I need to go pick up some old books!
    BTW, congratulations on the publish! Can’t wait for it. And maybe I’ll see you at Malice for an autograph!

    Liked by 2 people

  9. I loved the Trixie Belden books as a kid! Your book sounds equally wonderful. And I had to laugh at your comment about JB Fletcher. In addition to rarely being seen at her typewriter, she seems to have achieved a level of fame that makes her recognizable to most everyone she meets. Must be nice! mbradeen@yahoo.com

    Liked by 3 people

  10. I’ve never read Trixie, but I was a huge Nancy Drew fan back in the day–I had every book. So I’ll have to go w/ Nancy–she’s more my style anyway. legallyblonde1961 at yahoo dot com.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. Hi Karaleigh, I had up to 68 – I’m pretty sure there were more, but that was about the time I started moving on to other books. I’m jealous that you had them all! I ended up donating them to a school library, well, I did because my mom made me. To be fair, I was in my 20s then 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Wow! Thanks for the shout out!

    I enjoyed Nancy and the Hardys, but when I found Trixie, there was no turning back. So while Trixie edges out the others, I have my fond memories of reading all three as a kid.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Mark, I saw your name in the credits of the YouTube clips of the Trixie Belden convention in 2000. (I just HAD to go google her!). Sounded like fun. Were those really “real” Trixie settings? So cool…

      Liked by 2 people

      • There’s a video from the 2000 convention? I need to watch it.

        Yes, those were the locations that inspired the locations that Trixie calls home. It was a lot of fun.

        Liked by 1 person

      • We have an annual get together. These days they are loosely inspired by the books. They are really an excuse to hang out with friends and tour different parts of the country.

        Liked by 1 person

  13. Team Trixie all the way. It was Trixie who introduced me to the joy of reading. Before her, I read what I had to. Few other people that I knew back then had ever heard of her but I have been delighted to discover that many of my favorite cozy authors and most of my friends who love to read are Trixie fans. I still have a full set and have read them several times over the many years I have hoarded them. Now I have try your books because you like her too. I loved the blog Mark Baker wrote about Trixie Belden.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. I always liked Trixie and her friend Honey. Something about Nancy, while readable, made her always seem very dated. Thanks for the chance to win and congrats on your new release!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Definitely Team Trixie! My grandmother introduced me when I was a kid and her books are on my bookshelf along with other Trixies I have searched for over the years. Trixie is imperfect, impulsive, and imaginative. I am lucky to have found her, because now have an extended Trixie family that spans the country and even oceans.

    Like

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