The Hardy Boys Mysteries, 1927-1979: A Cultural and Literary History

Overview

In its 80+ years, the Hardy Boys series has sold more than 50 million books in 25 or more languages, and has inspired five television series and many stage plays, websites, comic books, graphic novels and computer games. The series has shaped the way millions of American children see themselves and society, and has shaped the perceptions of America held by young people around the world. This book follows the creation and development of the series through 1979. Topics include the writing of Stratemeyer and ...

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Overview

In its 80+ years, the Hardy Boys series has sold more than 50 million books in 25 or more languages, and has inspired five television series and many stage plays, websites, comic books, graphic novels and computer games. The series has shaped the way millions of American children see themselves and society, and has shaped the perceptions of America held by young people around the world. This book follows the creation and development of the series through 1979. Topics include the writing of Stratemeyer and McFarlane; the so-called "weird period"; the Cold War and the disco age; race, class and gender; family values; and law and order. Illustrations, bibliography, appendices and index.

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Editorial Reviews

Choice
A solid resource...recommended
Scarlet
a brisk, interesting read, not only for fans of the series
School Library Journal

An engaging and thorough history of the Hardy Boys, the Stratemeyer Syndicate, and serial publishing. Edward Stratemeyer founded the syndicate in 1905, changing the field of children's reading by creating 125 series, including the "Hardy Boys," "Nancy Drew," "Tom Swift," "the Bobbsey Twins," and "the Rover Boys." Stratemeyer managed the series by developing plot outlines for each and hiring contract authors to write the individual books. Connelly examines the evolution of the series beginning with the late 1920s, through the Depression, World War II, the McCarthy era, into the disco age and then to the present, tracing how cultural influences, race, class, gender, and values vary in the books as they reflect the times in which they were written. Illustrations show the evolution of the series through time. A cover picture of What Happened at Midnight (1931) shows Frank and Joe Hardy as young men in business suits. By 1993, they appear as part of a rap band performing on stage. A fascinating look at the history of these popular publications.-Rebecca Sheridan, Easttown Library & Information Center, Berwyn, PA

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786473045
  • Publisher: McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers
  • Publication date: 8/30/2012
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 262
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Mark Connelly teaches literature and film at Milwaukee Area Technical College in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where he is vice president of the Irish Cultural and Heritage Center.

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Table of Contents

Preface 1

Introduction: The Hardy Boys at Eighty 5

1 Off the Assembly Line: The Fiction Factory of Edward Stratemeyer 23

2 The McFarlane Formula: "I Opted for Quality" 47

3 The Weird Period 66

4 The Hardy Boys in Peace and Cold War 72

5 Policing the Hardy Boys: The "Great Purge" 83

6 Into the Disco Age 91

7 Race 98

8 Class 130

9 Hardy Girls: Gender in the Hardy Boys 138

10 Hardy Family Values 150

11 Law and Order 166

12 Action, not Violence 176

13 Bayport, USA 189

14 The Hardy Boys on Stage, on Screen, and in Parody 201

15 Book Wars: The Series Book under Fire 215

Chronology 231

The Hardy Boys Canon 233

Twenty Opening Lines 239

Hardyisms 241

Chapter Notes 243

Bibliography 247

Index 251

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