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The Message in the Hollow Oak (Nancy Drew, #12)
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The Message in the Hollow Oak (Nancy Drew #12)

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3.83 of 5 stars 3.83  ·  rating details  ·  6,545 ratings  ·  117 reviews
Nancy Drew tackles a mystery professional detectives failed to solve--finding a valuable centuries-old message in a hollow oak tree in Illinois.

The story is based on the original title of the same name first published in 1935. The plot is vastly different in this extensively revised and shortened version.
Hardcover, 181 pages
Published 1972 by Grosset and Dunlap (first published 1935)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Deanna
Whether or not you know anything about the different versions of Nancy Drew books, the books printed after 1959 are revised versions from the original Nancy Drew books. Only two of the original Nancy Drew books were totally rewritten when they were revised. This book is one of them. The other is The Secret of Shadow Ranch. I recommend reading both versions as the reader gets a better idea of how the original was written and how the revised version is different.
John Yelverton
Very dark and mysterious Nancy Drew novel. This series is so much fun, because no two books are the same.
Diane Walker
This book was one of my most desired as a child, because it was one of the few Nancy Drew mysteries my library didn't have. Finally someone gave the 1972 revision to me when I was near the end of my ND days. I didn't hate the new one, but it was unmemorable, concerning hidden missionary treasure. "Hidden missionary treasure" could be an intriguing plot device since these are not words usually found together. Unfortunately, it wasn't.

The 1935 edition is not unmemorable. It is completely different
...more
David Baltzer
People seem to pretty much ignore whether a book they discuss is an original or a revised edition and lump them all in together. My commentary is for the original version of the book.

When Nancy finally gets to see the piece of property that she won, her reaction is that it is mostly worthless to her if it doesn't have gold on it. Then when she and her friends are assisted with panning and no one turns up a fortune in a very short time, everyone is described as disappointed. I find it extremely d
...more
Douglas Pivonka
I thought that "The Message in the Hollow Oak" by Carolyn Keene was an interesting book with a lot of twists and turns. However, in my opinion, the actual mystery that Nancy Drew was trying to solve in this book was a little bit far fetched and odd, but the side plots, conflicts, and characters made up for the main story line. There was a multitude of detail in this book, which was both a positive and a negative. It helped to develop the story, but at the same time, it was somewhat unnecessary i ...more
J. Aleksandr Wootton
What can I say?

I'd run out of Hardy Boys. So I read all the Nancy Drews.

Some people were skeptical of a boy reading "girl books." I distinctly remember being the recipient of raised eyebrows and misguided remarks, from both adults and kids (though never, fortunately, from my own parents).

I ignored them, of course, even though when I was a kid failing to live up to gender stereotypes wasn't generally considered heroic. It was okay for girls to be interested in "boy things" (including books), but
...more
Hannah
I read a new printing of this book. I was at a used bookstore one day and saw it with a different cover. I opened it up, to my surprise the only thing the same between the old and the new was the title. The older 1932 copy is a lot better, it's more exciting.
Simone Sylvester
This was clearly a filler book, no real new characters were introduced, and nothing fabulous happened either.

Nancy meets up with her Aunt Eloise who tells her that a professional-detective buddy of hers, need detective help, and Nancy is just the girl to do it. (SURPRISE!!!!)
Her job is to go on a historically-enriched treasure hunt, and face sadistically determined opponents for the 'treasure'.

**SPOILER** (sort of...)

There is a young man at the place she stays at who is interested in Nancy, an
...more
Ruthie Jones
I read all the Nancy Drew books (and the Hardy Boys) when I was a child, but I will admit that I have read them all again as an adult (a few years ago). The stories are old fashioned, but that's why I like them so much.
Robin
Fun to re-read these childhood favorites!
Pop
May 26, 2014 Pop added it
This story is about a girl name Nancy Drew and her friend who go around or receive case to investigate and now it's about a treasure of an old soldier and ancient village, and this is not an easy job because of one gang who also want the treasure , come around and sabotage navy job and her friend . The adventure is hard and unpredictable but nancy and her friend will surely able to solve the case and find treasure. What did she found? She found something and gave it to a museum. If you want to k ...more
Tabi34
Another fun read. Nancy Drew, girl genius, is asked to solve the mystery of the message in the hollow oak by a member of the New York detective's club, when they were unable too. The book is full of dated material beginning with an archaeological dig of the Indian burial grounds in southern Illinois. Of course disturbing an ancient burial ground is taboo these days. People are kidnapped, but never harmed. The worst is they aren't fed regularly, for shame.

A bit of jealousy arises when another bo
...more
Danielle
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Phe☽♃
The Message in the Hollow Oak is a children's story by Carolyn Keene (pseudonym) and the 12th book in the Nancy Drew series.

Nancy Drew travels to Illinois to track down an ancient treasure, but when she receives threats and a friend is kidnapped, Nancy realizes that her life is in danger.


I’ve always been a voracious reader. So, as a child, one of my favorite things about summer was the frequent trips to our local library, which was less than a mile from our house. Like most young girls of
...more
Chloe
I really liked The Message in The Hollow Oak. It was full of mystery and suspense. I liked that one clue would lead to another. It made the book more enjoyable to read. I also liked that things were never as they seemed. It kept me guessing the entire time. My favorite part of the book was when Nancy found the treasure. It was a the moment when everything came to a close. I thought that it was a good place to end all of the suspense. I cannot think of one place when I was not enjoying the book.
Evelyn Montez
I thought it was a funny and interesting book .The adventurous of nancy drew are amazing .I love this book .With its dramatic begings and endings .This book was my faviortie book ive ever read of nancy drew .I liked that nancy had solved the mystery before the real detectives could and I liked she did it with her friends .
Alison
Read the original version, and found the feeling to be much darker than the versions I read as a child. Nancy wins some property in Canada and had guys attempt to steal the gold on it. Lots of guns and guys getting beat up.
Tristan
So far I have gotten to the point of where the gang has joined onto a steamboat for a trip along the river, and saved ace Armstrong, a missing detective from New York. After getting back onto the boat, the gang has a grand dinner, suddenly interrupted by a log flying in trough the window, apparently launched by the steamboats paddles the captain, sorry for the interruption, but happy for the overall safety of the passengers
Trinitymw
this adventure was the best one yet Nancy has solved a mystery that a man hasn't and he's an all day detective.
follow her as she makes her way through the forest and saves her new friend!!!¡!!!!!!¡!!!¡!!!!!¡!!!
Melanie
Anachronistic. Nancy is amazed at a self-service elevator! But also, the Gateway Arch is open for visitors, though it wasn't constructed until 1963. I wonder what they'd edited from the 1935 version of the story.

She gets wet a lot (falling into a river and into a quarry full of limey water) but remains conscious throughout.
Breanna Morgan
I think what I liked best about this book was how it made me chuckle, not because it was funny (at all) but because of how different books were 80 years ago, what information the author felt important to mention for one, the language for another. Books nowadays have to work so hard to create intricate and gripping plots, but there was no such thing as an overdone theme back then, which means that I was very bored reading this, on the flip side, the simplicity is what made it special because ther ...more
Meadow
A group of professional deceives challenge Nancy to tackle a mystery that they have failed to solve: find an invaluable massage hidden by a missionary centuries ago in a hallow oak tree in Illinois.
While searching in the woods for the ancient tree, Nancy and her friends live with a group of young archaeologists whoa re excavations prehistoric Indian burial mounds and on nearby farm. A shadowy enemy stalks Nancy and harasses everyone at the dig. The young investigator pursues her dangerous advers
...more
Nicki
I love the Nancy Drew books and normally read them in one sitting but i must admit that i struggled to get through this one and kept putting it back on the shelf and then picking it up again.I think for me it was lacking the dangerous situations which is one of the reasons i love these books so much.Yes you know Nancy will escape or be rescued but it is always thrilling when she is captured by the bad guys or one of her friends are kidnapped.I think i prefer the later version of the story which ...more
Ella
This Nancy Drew book is different than the others because they know who did it they just have to somehow capture Kit Kadle. the setting is awesome too.
Rebecca
Read the 1972 edition for my class, which was an entirely different book. I wish I could count this towards my book challenge, but Goodreads doesn't allow reviews of multiple editions for some strange reason.
Sydney
i really really liked this one. there is so much adventure and action with mystery.
Mikayla
As a Nancy Drew fan I hate to find one of the books that I don't like but this one... This was one of the Nancy Drews I had to laugh at because the Author just didn't think about things before she or he said them.

Here are some exsaples:

"There was no hidden treasure in sight."

"The ransom note was unsigned"

A man is holding a gun to Nancy, telling her to hand him a box and her response is: "Why should I give it to you?"

"I never want to be kidnapped again!"

Overall, was probably better in one of
...more
♆ BookAddict  ✒ La Crimson Femme
I remember the first time I read Nancy Drew. It blew my mind that there were girls presented with a brain. Most of the stuff I'd read up to that time, was that girls were sugar and spice - fluffy. No brains. To also learn about George who is a tomboy was a nice validation. Carolyn Keene wrote just for me! That is how I felt. When I did more research, I was shocked to find out, Ms. Keene was actually a man ... writing under Franklin Dixon. I also loved the Hardy Boys. No wonder I loved these seri ...more
Honor
Mar 17, 2014 Honor added it
Good book
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2015 Reading Chal...: The Message in the Hollow Oak 1 8 Jan 16, 2015 02:23PM  
  • The Secret of the Caves (Hardy Boys, #7)
  • The Gatehouse Mystery
Carolyn Keene is a writer pen name that was used by many different people- both men and women- over the years. The company that was the creator of the Nancy Drew series, the Stratemeyer Syndicate, hired a variety of writers. For Nancy Drew, the writers used the pseudonym Carolyn Keene to assure anonymity of the creator.

Edna and Harriet Stratemeyer inherited the company from their father Edward Str
...more
More about Carolyn Keene...

Other Books in the Series

Nancy Drew (1 - 10 of 175 books)
  • The Secret of the Old Clock (Nancy Drew, #1)
  • The Hidden Staircase (Nancy Drew, #2)
  • The Bungalow Mystery (Nancy Drew, #3)
  • The Mystery at Lilac Inn (Nancy Drew, #4)
  • The Secret of Shadow Ranch (Nancy Drew, #5)
  • The Secret of Red Gate Farm (Nancy Drew, #6)
  • The Clue in the Diary (Nancy Drew, #7)
  • Nancy's Mysterious Letter (Nancy Drew, #8)
  • The Sign of the Twisted Candles (Nancy Drew, #9)
  • Password to Larkspur Lane (Nancy Drew, #10)
The Secret of the Old Clock (Nancy Drew, #1) The Hidden Staircase (Nancy Drew, #2) Nancy Drew: #1-64 The Bungalow Mystery (Nancy Drew, #3) The Mystery at Lilac Inn (Nancy Drew, #4)

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“Nancy, every place you go, it seems as if mysteries just pile up one after another.” 50 likes
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