Thursday, May 08, 2008

My First Mystery

I was reminiscing today about my earliest books--the first ones I read alone. I think this one may have been my first mystery.

Big Max was a wonderful book: the tale of a detective who traveled by umbrella and was hired to solve a case for the King of Pooka Pooka, who had lost his beloved elephant.

I can still remember the joy of discovering that book, but also the thrill of mystery. I'm not sure if I figured out the ending or not, but I know it was satisfying, even to my seven-year-old self. Eventually I moved on to such sophisticated fare as Nancy Drew and Cherry Ames, and after that I read single-title suspense novels by authors like Mary Stewart, Phyllis A. Whitney and Victoria Holt.

Big Max is still in print and available to a whole new generation of children (and perhaps future mystery lovers). Thank you, Kin Platt, for my first mystery reading experience.


Picks by Pat said...

That's a great story. I loved reading all through my youth, but until I entered college, it was all non-fiction. I figured, if it was fiction, it wasn''t true, so why bother (yes, I know, but I've changed).

Two professors opened my eyes to the world of literature, and now, twenty five years later my first novel is being publsihed.

Perhaps I should let them know.

Julia Buckley said...

You absolutely should let them know, and also do book signings on your campus. There is surely a place in your alumni magazine for alumni publications.

Anonymous said...

I never read this mystery, but I can remember discovering mysteries in 2nd grade. I still have that book, but can't remember its title. I'll have to go grab it and maybe read it again. I do remember reading nearly every Nancy Drew and moving on from there. Mary Stewart was a major discovery for me - I found I loved the gothic suspense/mystery.

Julia Buckley said...

Oh, I agree--what a gift she was in the 60s and 70s. I still re-read her stuff today. Talk about someone I'd like to meet.

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