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The Secret of the Mansion (Trixie Belden #1)

The Secret of the Mansion (Trixie Belden #1)

4.9 44
by Julie Campbell, Michael Koelsch (Illustrator), Mary Stevens (Illustrator)

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Trixie’s summer is going to be sooo boring with her two older brothers away at camp. But then a millionaire’s daughter moves into the next-door mansion, an old miser hides a fortune in his decrepit house, and a runaway kid starts hiding out in Sleepyside!


Trixie’s summer is going to be sooo boring with her two older brothers away at camp. But then a millionaire’s daughter moves into the next-door mansion, an old miser hides a fortune in his decrepit house, and a runaway kid starts hiding out in Sleepyside!

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In another vein entirely, escapism 1940s-style is the allure of Trixie Belden #1: The Secret of the Mansion and Trixie Belden
Children's Literature
Trixie's summer is usually a bit boring, involving helping on the farm and taking care of her little brother. However, this summer is sure to be different. First, the Wheeler family moves in next door. Honey Wheeler is Trixie's age, and the two become fast friends. Then, the girls notice some odd goings-on at the decrepit mansion on the hill. They are drawn deeper and deeper into the mystery, and the insatiably curious-minded Trixie and her friends won't stop until they figure it out. This is the first in a popular series of mysteries now being re-printed. Readers will find down-to-earth Trixie Belden a refreshing change from Nancy Drew. "Trixie Belden #1." 2003 (orig. 1948), Random House, Ages 9 to 13.
— Heidi Hauser Green

Product Details

Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
Trixie Belden Series , #1
Edition description:
First Random House Edition
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.72(w) x 8.54(h) x 0.81(d)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

Read an Excerpt

Ten minutes later, Trixie and Bobby began the long climb up the Manor House driveway with Reddy racing ahead of them. At the turn in the road, a fat little cocker spaniel rushed down to meet them. Right behind the puppy was a tall thin girl whose pale face was framed in shoulder-length, light-brown hair. She cringed as Reddy, disdainfully ignoring the black puppy, raced around her in circles, barking furiously.
“Don’t pay any attention to him,” Trixie cried quickly, seeing that her new neighbor was really frightened. “He’s just showing off. He wouldn’t hurt a fly. I’m Trixie Belden,” she went on hurriedly. “My kid brother and I live in the hollow in that little white frame house–Crabapple Farm, you know.”
The girl stared solemnly from Trixie to Bobby and back again. “How do you do?” she said, holding out her slender hand. “My name is Honey–Honey Wheeler.”
Trixie shook hands, feeling rather foolish at such a display of formality. Oh, my, she thought, almost sick with disappointment, she’s stuck-up. Who would go around in a white linen dress and stockings and sandals unless there’s a party? Aloud she asked, without much hope, “Do you ride horseback?”
Honey smiled, then. “Oh, yes,” she said. “Do you?”
Trixie shook her head ruefully. “No, but I want to learn like anything. The only thing I have to ride is a babyish old bike. But I’m earning the money now to buy a horse just as soon as I can.”
“A bike?” Honey’s smile widened, and Trixie had to admit that the girl was really pretty in a pale sort of way. “I wish I had a bike,” she said wistfully. “Mother wouldn’t let me have one in the city because of traffic, and the rest of the time I was at boarding school and camp where they’re not allowed.” Timidly she moved a step nearer to Trixie. “I’ll teach you how to ride horseback,” she offered. “Then perhaps you would show me how to ride a bike.”
Trixie could hardly believe her ears. “That’s great,” she gasped. “Let’s start right away. I mean the horseback part. I can teach you how to ride a bike any time.” She turned impatiently to Bobby, who was joyously cuddling the cocker spaniel puppy. “You go home now, Bobby, and play in the sandpile.”
Bobby ignored her and grinned up at Honey. “Are you rich?” he demanded. “Hey! What’s it like to be rich?”
Trixie felt her cheeks flame hotly, but Honey merely smiled and said, “It’s not nice at all, Bobby. I can’t remember when I didn’t want to be like other people.” She turned shyly toward Trixie and added, “When I was little, my nurses never let me play in the dirt the way Bobby is now, and I was never allowed to go any place by myself for fear of being kidnaped.” She stopped suddenly as her enormous hazel eyes filled with tears. “I hardly ever saw my father and mother until I got sick. And now they’ve bought this big old place just for me. But what good is it? What good is anything if you’re never allowed to have any fun?”
Trixie could never bear to see anyone unhappy. “Gee,” she said, putting her arm sympathetically around Honey’s thin shoulders. “I never thought about it like that. I always thought it would be wonderful to have a lot of money.” She stopped as the word money gave her an idea. “I tell you what let’s do.” She whirled Honey around and pointed across the woods to Ten Acres, which she called Miser’s Mansion in her own mind. “See that big old gray and yellow house on the opposite hill?”
Honey nodded and dabbed at her eyes with a dainty handkerchief.
“Well,” Trixie went on excitedly, “a crazy old man lives there all alone. Dad took him to the hospital this morning, so this is a swell time to explore. I’ve always wanted to see what the inside of the house was like.”
“Trixie Belden!” Honey gasped in a shocked voice. “You wouldn’t really break into somebody’s house!”
“Of course not.” Trixie grinned. “Old Mr. Frayne would probably have me thrown in jail if I did such a thing. But there’s no reason why we couldn’t peek in through a window. You know what they say in the village?” she demanded. “They say there’s a half million dollars hidden there. Let’s go!”
“I wouldn’t go near that creepy old place,” Honey said firmly. “And I don’t believe there’s any money hidden there. Why, the house is practically falling to pieces, and it hasn’t been painted in ages.”
“How do you know all that?” Trixie demanded impatiently. “You can’t see it that clearly from here.”
“I was there early this morning,” Honey explained. “Daddy and I were out riding, and we went up that old driveway thinking it was a road to the woods. We didn’t realize that it led to the Mansion until we were halfway up. Then, of course, we knew we were trespassing, so we turned around. It looked like a deserted house to me, and I was glad to get away from there. Nobody would want to live in such a horrible, run-down place.”
Trixie bent down and fumbled with her shoelace to hide the disappointment on her face. She’s worse that I thought she was at first, she thought. A silly old fraidy cat. Aloud she said coldly, “Of course, a lot of people think old Mr. Frayne went crazy after his wife died, and he lost all his money. That’s why the place is run-down. Anyway, I’m going to look around there while Mr. Frayne’s in the hospital. You don’t have to if you don’t want to.”
“Are you sure he’s in the hospital?” Honey asked, suddenly.
Trixie straightened up. “Of course. Dad took him in early this morning. He’s not expected to live.”
“That’s funny,” Honey said slowly. “We were there about an hour ago. As we rode down the hill, I got the creepy feeling you get when you know somebody you can’t see is watching you. I looked back over my shoulder quickly, and I saw a face at one of the windows.” She shivered slightly. “I’ll bet that house is haunted!”

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The Secret of the Mansion: Trixie Belden Series, Book 1 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 44 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read Trixie in the 50's and wanted to live in her world. My 33 year old daughter read the series when she was in elementary and junior high school and enjoyed them as much as I did. My youngest daughter who is 24 and a newlywed read and re-read them many, many times. Before her marriage she told me (and she meant it) that if her house caught fire she would grab her 30+ Trixie books and a favorite stuffed dog before leaving the house. She has told her new husband the same thing. PS There is a website for Trixie that Maggie found and ordered both she and I a t-shirt showing Trixie and The Secret of the Masion. One final thing - I bought #'s 1-4 and yes, I read them.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The first Trixie Belden I read was in 1968, I was 9 years old. Now, at 45, I'm loving them all over again. They are fun, exciting, and extremely well written for any generation or any age. Enjoy them all!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I began reading Trixie at age 8, when I became a little too old for the perfect world of the other, titan haired sleuth. Trixie, to me, was a real girl with real problems and her own ways of solving them. I related to her. I wanted to BE her, or at least one of her close friends. After all, who doesn't want to belong to a secret club, horseback ride, solve mysteries, and have picnics with 6 of your closest buddies?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So really I just started to read the series when my friend gave me the book! So far Ive loved it!!! I cant wait to buy Way more!!! Hope u like it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love trixie belden books!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read my mom's collection of Trixie Belden books about 15 years ago when I was a young teenager. Now I am a teacher and plan to read these books to my students. When I think about my childhood the fond memories are quite often of reading these great books.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Wonderful book wish i could rate it twenty stars!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love this book !!! It is on of the best series ever!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read these as a kid in the 70s! I personally preferred them to that other mystery series. I am so happy to be able to read them aga5!!!
baileytess More than 1 year ago
I read this series when I was a young girl, so when I saw that the first eight were available for NOOK, I had to buy them! They are still as charming and entertaining as they were when I was nine! This was a delightful visit back to my youth, and a book that should please any young reader, but especially girls between 8 and 12.
jmsmom More than 1 year ago
I am thrilled to see Trixie available on a new format! I grew up, 60s & 70s, reading her mysteries. Now I can have them on my Nook! Awesome! I hope they release all of the mysteries in Nook format, not just the first few like they did with the new hardcovers. Trixie may be a bit dated for today's children, but I cannot wait to introduce her to my granddaughter.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I received 'The Secret of the Mansion' as a gift for my 10th birthday in 1961! As an Indiana farm girl, I found great adventure and suspense following Trixie and Honey in all of their suspenseful endeavors. They became my friends and I always felt that I went along as an observer in their many mysteries! It was great reading and it really opened up a whole new world for me. Secret of the Mansion sparks the imagination of children. It also portrays the values of friendships. Welcome back Trixie! I look forward to reading these books to my grandchildren!
Guest More than 1 year ago
As a young girl I was a very avid reader. I loved Trixie Belden more than any other books. A few years back I tried to buy some for my niece in the hopes she would love them also. She is quite a few years older now and the window of opportunity is closed. I was so thrilled to find out that I can purchase them now for my 10 year old daughter. I really hope she has the same love for them as I did. Besides it gives me an excuse to reread them all over agian.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is an amazing book. A great mystery book for thrid to eighth graders. There is no scary or innapporite things at all. If you liked the first bokk they have a whole series of them. Hope you like them!! :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If ur looking for something other than hardy boys or nancy drew, the book ( series ) to read is Trixie Belden. She is very adventuress and has a brain for adventure and mystery. I recommend this book for all ages. GO TRIXIE!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love this book. Once you start reading it you can't stop. Everyone should read it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Trixie is a daring girl with great adventurs. I love the seres I wish they had more. Also I wish that the series was still in production. P.S sorry about the spelling hard to tipe.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read #15 but i cant find #16
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Trixie Belden gets into the best mysterys!!! I love all of these great books, even though I havn't read them all. I hope whoever reads them will love them too! REVIEW BY: LEH
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago