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Mandie and the Secret Tunnel (Mandie #1)

3.95  ·  Rating Details  ·  3,159 Ratings  ·  162 Reviews
Mandie Shaw, almost a teenager, is certain God no longer loves her as she watches her father being lowered into his grave. Mandie's move into a neighbor family's home, when her mother remarries, does not soften her grief. Her only comfort is the promise from her father's faithful Cherokee friend, Uncle Ned, to watch out for her and be a friend. Will Mandie be able to escap ...more
Paperback, 141 pages
Published May 1st 1983 by Bethany House Publishers (first published April 1st 1983)
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Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all) That would depend on the reader. For a person reading at adult level, not long at all. For a kid in the age group the book is written for (say 10-12),…moreThat would depend on the reader. For a person reading at adult level, not long at all. For a kid in the age group the book is written for (say 10-12), they might take 5hrs or so.(less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jan 07, 2010 Amy rated it it was amazing
Every now and then you stumble upon something that changes your life. C.S. Lewis refers to it as joy. I'm not sure what to call it, but "Mandie and the Secret Tunnel" represents the beginning for me. I was seven or eight when I first read it, the summer before I'd started reading and haven't stopped since. I remember the day Mom took me up to the 'big kid' section to find chapter books, suggesting this one for me, taking it home. It was boring at first, but by the time I was ten or eleven, I had ...more
Lindsey (Books for Christian Girls)
About this book:

“Mandie Shaw, almost a teenager, is certain God no longer loves her as she watches her father being lowered into his grave. Mandie's move into a neighbor family's home, when her mother remarries, does not soften her grief. Her only comfort is the promise from her father's faithful Cherokee friend, Uncle Ned, to watch out for her and be a friend. Will Mandie be able to escape her new and nearly intolerable home situation? Will she find her long-lost family? Will the mysterious key
Taiyesha-Duchess of Indiana
Jun 13, 2011 Taiyesha-Duchess of Indiana rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Elementary Kids, Parents, Young children, Christians
Oh mandie. This book series was literally the light of my elementary to middle school years. It marked a time of innocence. I remember the serious anticipation i had as i waited each week for my book to arrive at the library. This is a great book for anyone young. It builds moral fiber. It is Christian, and sticks to Christian beliefs. However, even if one is not of the christian faith the morals are all for the greater good of society and the religious factor, though integral, could be over loo ...more
Jun 05, 2008 Kalee rated it really liked it
this was my favorite series growing up! Every young girl should read them - they taught me a lot about life, love and God, all while being thoroughly entertaining! Actually, they are good for boys too - my brother loved them! lol

I won't bother marking every book in the series but i have read most of them and highly reccommend them for young girls!
V. Gingerich
I admit it: I am reviewing these books years after reading them. However, do not even suggest that I'm no longer qualified, that too many years have passed to remember. My battered and faded copies of these books testify to how many times I read them growing up and plots and entire passages are seared in my memory forever.

Snowball always ran away, Mandie always got in trouble, Uncle Ned always rescued her, and Joe and Tommy bristled at each other. I myself prefered Joe, but Tommy's cosmopolitan
Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
Three and a half stars.
Mandie has real problems and reacts like a real kid. Yes, women often did farm their kids out if they were widowed and remarried, right into the 1940s. Yes, said farmed-out kids were treated as basically slave labour by many of the people who took them in; they were made aware every minute that they were there on sufferance and had to "pull their weight". Yes, there were (and are) many preachers who emphasise hellfire instead of Christ's forgiveness and grace. The Christ
Jan 12, 2009 Sara rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: upper elementary age
I first read this book when I was around 11 or so - Mandie's age in the story. I loved the series then, and I still find it enjoyable now. I happened to spot the books on the shelf at the library and decided to read the series again.
The book begins with the death of Mandie's father and tells of how she deals with her grief in the face of the hardships set before her. By the end of the book, she has made new friends and found a new life for herself in her uncle's house.
As a child, I loved that th
Mar 30, 2010 Trudi rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: 8 to 12 year olds
This book, at the time, was the best book that a ten year old could get her hands on...or so I thought. I remember going into the library in search of a book...and stumbling across this one. I picked it up and couldn’t stop. After that I read all forty-one of Lois Gladys Leppard's Mandie Series and had two years of entertainment.
I remember how much I wanted Mandie and Joe to get together *sigh* but alas! She died before she could get to that part. Oh well, I look back on this book (and all of t
Sofia Marie
May 23, 2016 Sofia Marie rated it really liked it
When her father dies Mandie is left with her unfeeling mother and cruel sister. Things don't get better when she is sent to a neighbor's farm two miles away to live. Mandie's two friends are Joe, an old schoolmate and great comfort, and Uncle Ned - her father's faithful Cherokee friend. Will she be able to run to safety with Uncle Ned? Will she finally get to know the truth about her family? Where does the secret tunnel lead to? Does God still love her?

This book teaches important life lessons. W
Tim Kruse
Sep 26, 2007 Tim Kruse rated it liked it
Yeah, yeah, they're "girl books"... but it's not like I read the whole series (only the first 23 books to be exact) but what else is there to do after you've read all the Bobbsey Twins and Hardy Boys?
Caedy  Eries
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 31, 2009 Heidi rated it liked it
Recommended to Heidi by: Hannah Kiesewetter
The first in a series that I probably would have really enjoyed around ages 8-11. As an adult, I couldn't ignore all of the amazing, convenient, and slightly annoying coincidences and the cheesiness. But there is nothing harmful in the book, except maybe the 13-year old proposing to the 11-year old. ;-) Especially as it is Christian lit.

With the living situation being settled by the end, I might be more interested in the other mysteries that Mandie sets out to solve. I did enjoy being able to g
Lizzi Crystal
Jul 16, 2015 Lizzi Crystal rated it it was ok
I adored this series as a child. I think it's part of the reason I dreamed of visiting Europe from such a young age. However, on re-reading these for nostalgia's sake as an adult, I'm recoiling in horror. They're badly written, repetitive and chock-full of in-your-face Christianese. No wonder, coming from a strictly conservative Christian publisher. I'm glad for the hours I spent enjoying these as a child, but saddened that trite Christian books were the only ones I was allowed to read.
Feb 13, 2012 Dexter added it
Shelves: own, christian, mystery
I can't really rate these books, because I grew up reading them so they hold a certain fondness. They are fairly good mysteries for young reader's, but since I'm hardly a young reader anymore, there were plenty of things that annoyed me (nothing that the average ten-year-old would notice of course).

For one thing, it seems like the only reason Mandie and Elizabeth like Uncle John is that he looks just like Jim. It makes me feel very, very sorry for Uncle John.
Richard Pittman
Oct 08, 2014 Richard Pittman rated it really liked it
I was totally unfamiliar with this series of books until my daughter checked the first one out from the library for me to read to her. I liked the story quite well enough. It was a fun adventure story with a good bit of darkness, particularly in Mandie's rejection by her family after the death of her beloved father, which begins the book. The danger and trauma experienced by Mandie seems real. The only problem I have with the book is that its depictions of race are somewhat behind the times and ...more
This was one of my all-time favorite series as a young girl! I fell in love with reading when I began the Mandie series- words can not express the amount of joy and adventure that Lois Gladys Leppard brought to my life through these books!
Rachel Kennedy
Nov 03, 2014 Rachel Kennedy rated it it was amazing

October Book Review
The book I read this month was Mandie and the Secret Tunnel, by Lois Gladys Leppard. This book was set in the year 1900 in North Carolina. I immediately felt sympathy for the main character, Mandie, who’s beloved father has just died. Her mother, who has never been fond of her, soon remarries. Mandie is sent away to live with another family, but with help of her father’s Cherokee friend, Uncle Ned, she goes to her uncle’s (who she has never met) house, where he is said to be d
Sep 23, 2014 Anna rated it liked it
For the entire Mandie series:
I read these (sneakily borrowing them from my sister) when I was a child/tween. At the time, I remember really enjoying them. They're full of mystery and mischief. My 8-year old daughter is currently reading them, and enjoying them as well.
There is a lot of Jesus/faith (and I understand that it's a Christian author), and although the books are set in the late 1800s/early 1900s, there are a few things that have made me uncomfortable. While reading aloud, servants are
Nov 08, 2008 Taliah rated it really liked it
This book may have a sad beginning, but the wait is worth it. All the fun adventures, excapes and hikes are so exciting and will keep you at the edge of you seat!!
I remember reading these books when I was younger, and I'm re-reading them for nostalgia's sake. I loved them then, and it's a nice trip down memory lane for me.
Jun 21, 2014 Gail rated it really liked it
An old fashioned story of hope and love. A young girl is mistreated by her mother and her father has just died. She doesn't understand why God does not love her and why he is punishing her. She is sent away to live with another family and be their servant. She is mistreated there too. She overhears that she has a relative that might take her in, so she runs away and goes to his house. While she is there, she makes a friend and finds out her mother is alive and not the woman who was so mean to he ...more
Karie Anne
Dec 25, 2010 Karie Anne rated it it was amazing
Feb 18, 2012 Jessica rated it really liked it
I didn't read these until I was in highschool.I know, it's not really the age range for these books. But, I wasn't a very good reader. My sister had read them and continued to try and persuade me to read them. I just wasn't interested. However, I was extremely bored one day and needed to read something for our libraries summer reading program. I picked up the first book and had it read within a few hours. The next day, I was ordering the books in the series my sister didn't own from the library. ...more
Dec 14, 2015 Jodi rated it liked it
I've always loved this book. I read it and the whole series many times as a young girl, and again just recently as a mom. I was rather disappointed this time around, however, with the series; it was unsettling for me to notice the blatant disobedience and sneaking out (often without consequences or even an addressing of the fault) among other things common throughout the series. Mandie is not the best of role models for girls...I enjoyed her adventures as a child and I don't think they affected ...more
Jan 14, 2014 Cassie rated it liked it
I've never had such a hard time deciding what rating to give a book. I read this series as a kid, and I LOVED it (though I don't remember reading the first book specifically). However, reading this as an adult, I was more than a little disappointed. Maybe I just had my expectations set too high because of how much I loved it when I was younger. Or maybe I'm just not used to reading books aimed for such a young audience anymore. But I thought the plot jumped around too much and it just didn't flo ...more
Larissa Langsather
Aug 04, 2011 Larissa Langsather rated it liked it
I was introduced to the Mandie series through my church's library. The books were so neatly lined up and my friends (even boys) were reading them so I checked them out. I was about 10 or 11. The first book I read was number 3 or 4 in the series, but the next one I read was this first one- Mandie and the Secret Tunnel. Right from the start this book had me. I have always been a softy for someone who looses a parent.

I guess the biggest thing I learned from this book was that my life was pretty bo
Rosalie Findle
Aug 29, 2015 Rosalie Findle rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mandie-mystery
This Book and series is great for girls ages ranging from about ten to fifteen. They are all Christian mysteries. Completely appropriate. I have read all forty books. Towards the middle and close to the end it can get hard to continue. The story line for each book is similar. I strongly suggest this series.
Charmain Sheely
Jan 10, 2015 Charmain Sheely rated it liked it
This was a childhood favorite of mine and I decided to pick it up today and read it. Finished it in a couple hours since it was so short. It was not as good as I remembered, but that's probably because I'm older now. It was a nice trip down memory lane as I thought of all the good memories associated with this book.
Dundee Library
Okay, young mystery lovers, this is a series for you! I grew up reading Mandie books and I recommend them highly to young readers ages 9 and up. There are forty main titles, with a few younger kids series and one College Year book. The only bad thing I have to say about this series is that the author died before finishing! A huge disapointment, as I will never find out who Mandie ended up marrying when she gets older! But definitely check these books out, especially if you enjoy historical ficti ...more
Oct 09, 2012 Katie rated it really liked it
I remember reading a chapter or two with my mom almost every night when I was little. I had all the Mandie books, and I do mean all of them.

They were wonderful mysteries with likable characters and a Christian undertone. Yes, these were Christian books for young readers - my mom picked them up from a local Christian bookstore - but they weren't in-your-face about it. They showed a simple message of love and forgiveness and compassion through its main character: a young girl with a love and
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What's The Name o...: SOLVED. Christian Historical Kid's Series 80s-90s [s] 5 248 Jul 28, 2015 09:57PM  
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Lois Gladys Leppard was the ever-popular and prolific writer of Mandie Books. She was also a professional singer, actress, and playwright. Lois studied at the New York School of Music and the Voice Beautiful Institute in New York under Glenn Morris Starkie. Additionally, she and her two sisters, Sibyl and Louise, sang professionally as the Larke Sisters and appeared in the operetta Bohemian Girl
More about Lois Gladys Leppard...

Other Books in the Series

Mandie (1 - 10 of 40 books)
  • Mandie and the Cherokee Legend (Mandie, #2)
  • Mandie and the Ghost Bandits (Mandie, #3)
  • Mandie and the Forbidden Attic (Mandie Books, #4)
  • Mandie and the Trunk's Secret (Mandie Books, #5)
  • Mandie and the Medicine Man (Mandie Books, #6)
  • Mandie and the Charleston Phantom (Mandie Books, #7)
  • Mandie and the Abandoned Mine (Mandie Books, #8)
  • Mandie and the Hidden Treasure (Mandie, #9)
  • Mandie and the Mysterious Bells (Mandie #10)
  • Mandie and the Holiday Surprise (Mandie Books, 11)

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