Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Secret of the Old Clock: 80th Anniversary Limited Edition” as Want to Read:
The Secret of the Old Clock: 80th Anniversary Limited Edition
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

The Secret of the Old Clock: 80th Anniversary Limited Edition (Nancy Drew #1)

3.95 of 5 stars 3.95  ·  rating details  ·  34,538 ratings  ·  1,475 reviews
Nancy Drew's keen mind is tested when she searches for a missing will.
ebook, 192 pages
Published May 1st 1930 by Grosset & Dunlap (first published January 1st 1930)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Secret of the Old Clock, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Danielle B I had to read the original for a graduate class I am in. I was able to purchase it through the college bookstore. Maybe if you try a local library you…moreI had to read the original for a graduate class I am in. I was able to purchase it through the college bookstore. Maybe if you try a local library you would be able to get an original copy?(less)
Danielle B I had to read the original for a graduate class I am in. I was able to purchase it through the college bookstore. Maybe if you try a local library you…moreI had to read the original for a graduate class I am in. I was able to purchase it through the college bookstore. Maybe if you try a local library you would be able to get an original copy?(less)
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Jul 03, 2008 Jessica rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: girl sleuths who've recently learned to read
I see this edition is actually a postcard book, but I wanted to review The Secret of the Old Clock with its proper cover.

This was the first chapter book I ever read. I have a very clear memory of my mom giving it to me in the car on the way back from Palo Alto, which can't possibly be correct because she wouldn't have handed me a book while driving on the freeway. Maybe she gave it to me before we started driving, and I was reading it in the car? It's kind of a mystery.

Anyway, these books taught
Stacia (the 2010 club)
So I was watching the BDSM episode of Our America, and this one chick said that she first discovered her fascination with being tied up when Nancy was being tied up by the bad guys...


Anyway, I loved this series as a child. I intend to revisit it someday. Nancy was my girl...and apparently these books are a gateway drug to a kinkier life.
Sep 09, 2007 Cheryl rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: teens
Shelves: ya
I think Nancy drew was the beginning of the end for me. Her adventures and the mysteries that she solved made me yearn to solve my own. This made me inquisitive, leading to a job as a journalist at 14. It also made me want to write.

And here I am...just a few years later (Ok, more than a few), and I'm a writer of suspense, mysteries and thrillers! :) Go figure.

I recommend this book for pre-teens and young teens. It's a great escape. And for women who want to remember a piece of their youth, pick
Honestly reading this book as an adult was almost brutal. Nancy's whole demeanor/thoughts/words used etc were just so cheesy.
BUT, I read quite a few Nancy Drew books during my preteen years & I absolutely LOVED them. I loved them enough to never part with the books & if I find the "old style" edition of a Nancy Drew book that I don't have I buy it, still.
So, I am giving the book 5 stars because when I was a kid I really did think these books were amazing. Now, as an adult, they are ridi
This is the first time I've read Nancy Drew since I was about seven, and imagine my delight when she turned out to be absolutely out of her mind bonkers. She's always mulling over fresh tire tracks and sparkling her eyes at her own father while wearing an attractive linen suit. I love her. The only things missing for me were Bess and her extra five pounds.
I want to give this a five because of the enormous impact it's had on the popular imagination, and because it's the first book in a series that features a female main character who is smart and brave and rescues her boyfriend instead of the other way around, and because I read it about 100000 times when I was a kid, but the writing is just so bad. One thing that never struck me before: why are there so many pairs of siblings in this book? Two aging sisters, two aging brothers, two young sisters, ...more
Nov 02, 2014 Alex rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 8 - 10--year-olds?
Shelves: 2013
When I was a kid I blasted through all of these books one summer, and came away with a lifelong automatic crush on any woman who has strawberry blonde hair. Which, btw, she doesn't even have in this first book, it's just blonde. I looked it up and apparently her hair color evolved. Two stars for blonde hair.

This is a children's book, written at a very basic level. I don't know, eight-year-olds? Whatever the stage is where kids start reading chapter books. It'll have some unusual words - I think
Somehow with my huge reading appetite as a child, I never picked up a Nancy Drew Book. I managed to read a few Bobsey Twin books, Box Car Children, Laura Ingalls, The Littles, Betsy-Tacy, and Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle, Anne of Greene Gables, but never Nancy Drew. I guess I missed out! Anyway, I got to enjoy my first book with my daughter who after seeing the Nancy Drew movie a few months ago has become a huge fan.

Because these books were written in the 50s (30s? - my book says 30s but would a girl have
Kristina Lenarczyk
Reading this book again made me feel so nostalgic! I used to read this countless times as a kid so I'm glad I picked it up again.
Andy Deemer
Oh, Nancy, how damned earnest you are! What infuriated me the most about this book -- and infuriated I was -- was the two-dimensional nonsense that spewed from each flat character's mouth. "I wish we could travel," say the two brothers, "if only we'd been left money in the old man's will!" Every time we meet them, which is not a few times, they'll speak that same one damned line. Alison constantly harping on about her desire for voice lessons, Judy's minders dreaming they could send the promisin ...more
Jul 14, 2012 Victoria rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Girls who love a good mystery who are ready to read
Recommended to Victoria by: Raven (Thanks for recommending me this series!)
Nancy Drew books have always been my favorite series growing up. When I was in 4th grade, I didn't discover this series until my best friend, Raven, urge me to read it. I was a bit skeptical since I didn't read a lot of mystery books when I was little. After a lot of nagging and her begging me to read this, I decide to read it! And I must say--I LOVE IT! I thanked Raven a lot and I was so happy that she recommended me this series. Without her, I would probably not have found out this series and ...more
How can you work on a girls' mystery series project and *not* read Nancy Drew? I don't think you can, so my inaugural Nancy is the 1938 printing of ND #1. How did I not read this book as a child?


Hmmm...I wish I had read Nancy for the first time as a kid, because I think I would have loved her then: she's spunky, independent, and ready to right the world's injustices. As an adult, though, I couldn't quite get past the fact that the injustices Nancy set out to resolve hinged upon putting tha
Jeremy Preacher
I found these reprints of the 1930 versions of the Nancy Drew series, and read them side-by-side with the 1950s versions. What a fascinating exercise!

The standout difference, aside from the really appalling portrayal of the one black person in the early edition, was the addition in the 50s of a number of incidents that seem to be intended to heighten the tension, including an orphan child and her elderly caretakers who desperately need a chunk of the inheritance and a dog attack that consists of
When a young girl, Judy, is almost hit by a large moving van and falls off a bridge in her attempt to avoid being hit, eighteen-year-old Nancy Drew quickly rescue the girl and brings her back to Judy’s home, which she shares with her Great Aunts Mary Edna Turner. The two elderly ladies share with Nancy that they don’t have a lot of money, especially since their promised inheritance from Josiah Crowley fell through. Mr. Crowley’s fortune was willed to the snobby, rude, and already rich Topham fam ...more
When I was younger, there was a book store in a small mall in a town near where I lived that carried these Nancy Drew books. Actually, it wasn't really just a book store, it was more of a book, toy and hobby shop, as they also stocked Breyer horses, model car kits and the like. The reason I remember these books is that they were right across the aisle from the Breyer horses, which were my PASSION at the time. Anyone else who was ever a pre-teen horse loving girl will know what I am talking about ...more
Okay -- yes I am about 25 years too old to be reading this book ... but I tried to read it when I was the appropriate age and couldn't get past the gloves and convertible running errands for Daddy.

I finally got past all that and decided, you know, it wasn't half bad. I am not a t-shirt wearing convert but at least I successfully read it and may try to read another at some point.

As previously mentioned, Nancy runs errands for her father the handsome widower Carson Drew, attorney at law. She has a
After delivering some papers to her father, Nancy Drew is driving on a country road and spots a young girl almost getting hit by a van. She goes to the girl's rescue when she falls into the water.
Nancy takes the young girl into her aunt's house and after some talking, Nancy learns that the family doesn't have very much money and that they were supposed to get an inheritance from Josiah Crowley. Nancy decides to take the mystery into her own hands.

This is my first time ever reading a Nancy Drew b
Jul 14, 2012 Simon rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Simon by: Samantha Pellegrino
I love this book despite how old it is or how it seems very juvenile, even though Nancy is my age.
I read it for the first time back in Grade 7 and I fell in Love with the series, I have made it a mission to own all of them (including the Hardy Boys) i have only managed to read up to the 9th book however, so now with the help of this website and my own determination, I will read all of them.

I think it is safe to say that some of the crimes committed in this book, couldn't happen today due to te
My first impression of this book, AKA the first sentence completely and totally put me off. I don't know what kind of person Carolyn Keene was, but i would not like to be her friend. Firstly, she writes like a snob. For example "Nancy Drew, a good-looking girl..." that important to the story? Then another part..."she goes shopping in River Heights finest store"....oooookaaaay..."She pulls up in her blue convertible to her big mansion with two garages"...fine! ^_^ We get the point. ...more
I never read the Nancy Drew mysteries as a child. I went straight to Sherlock Holmes and more "adult" mysteries. It was fun to read Nancy's first detective adventure, but the material is dated and formulaic. I would be more interested in reading the original versions ... This was clearly an update of the original 1934 story ... I don't think they had convertibles with push button activated tops in those days!
Dec 12, 2009 Elizabeth rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Elizabeth by: my older cousin. (=
I remember the first time I read this series. I was 8 and they were my older cousins so I wanted to read them to. (I wanted to be just like her and do everything she did.). As soon as I started reading it I was OBSESSED. I LOVED this series! it took me about 3 months to read all the books the local library had, and I started requesting them for birthday gifts ETc. I own almost the whole series, and I will never get rid of them. I want to pass them on to my own kids someday.
I wouldn’t say thes
I picked up this 1991 reproduction of the first edition of the Secret of the Old Clock by Carolyn Keene, a pseudonym of Edward Stratemeyer. Stratemeyer founded the Stratemeyer Syndicate in the early part of the 20th century and produced over 1200 books, including Tom Swift, the Bobbsey Twins, Nancy Drew, and the Hardy Boys. In 1929 Stratemeyer sent plot outlines of a new girl's mystery series, following the success of the Hardy Boys, to Mildred Wirt, a young ghost writer from Iowa, who completed ...more
A young friend asked me a few weeks ago for a couple of book recommendations--did I mention that she is in 4th grade? After we talked about some of my favorite books that I read when I was her age,and that was decades ago, I suddenly remembered the Nancy Drew series. A quick trip to a used book store and I was the proud owner of the first book in the Nancy Drew series. The four stars are not for the writing or for the plot. Those are not what I remembered. The four stars are for the memories of ...more
Just realized I've never added any of the Nancy Drews to Goodreads. My mom has hardcover first editions of all of them (except one little bugger near the end of the run) and they're basically how I learned to read. Oh, man. I should really go back and re-read. I wonder how they hold up?
I read a lot of Nancy Drew as a kid -- probably more of the later Nancy Drew Files than the earlier "yellow flashlight" books -- but I'm still fairly certain I've at least read the early ones in the original series before. It's all a bit fuzzy though, I must admit. As Carolyn of Riedel Fascination pointed out in her review, this really is not the best example of the Nancy Drew series. It sets the stage and introduces a classic character, but the writing quality is not up to par with later books. ...more
John Yelverton
The very first Nancy Drew book. It's so good that the series is still being published 80 years later.
Bibek Thapa
It was fun to go on Nancy's first adventure as a young detective, but I truly missed Bess and George.
After receiving the entire Nancy Drew collection (the original 56 that is) as a gift I decided to bring on the nostalgia and re-read them. Nancy Drew was (and sorta still is) my absolute hero growing up. I loved her cool car, her ability to solve mysteries and that she was an independent woman who often outwitted the men in her life. Seeing as this is the first book, I look at it fondly as the start of an adventure but not much more. The case is rather dull and Nancy acts as a lone wolf (the pub ...more
Oh, the days of the simple plots, the days of respect for authority, the days of common courtesy. Corny you say? That was my thought when I picked it up, but to my surprise it wasn’t corny at all; just a clean, simple, wholesome mystery.

This is a re-read! I was 8 years old when I first read "The Secret of the Old Clock". Fifty (50) years ago I cozied up to this book and gave it a try. Nancy Drew Mysteries is where my reading addiction started, and it’s still agoin’. I listed in my “read” shelf m
I remember reading many of my mother's old yellow spined Nancy Drew books as a young child but as an adult I do not recall them at all. Some of the books from my childhood I remember quite well and still have a soft spot for them, but Nancy Drew was never one of them. Perhaps that is why after reading Nancy Drew for the first time as an adult I was left less than impressed, perhaps I wasn't impressed as a child either.

First of all, Nancy Drew may be the first, if not simply the epitome, of a Mar
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Mystery 3 10 Sep 26, 2014 01:15AM  
hardy boys vs. nancy drew 69 113 May 27, 2014 10:14PM  
It's an Adventure! 1 16 Sep 01, 2013 10:04PM  
Nancy Drew Readers: The Secret of the Old Clock #1 - discussion topic 14 30 Jul 17, 2013 02:11PM  
Past Present Future 4 68 May 09, 2013 01:42PM  
Quote location 1 15 Mar 09, 2013 07:46AM  
  • The Tower Treasure (Hardy Boys, #1)
  • The Black Jacket Mystery (Trixie Belden, #8)
  • The Secret of the Mansion (Trixie Belden #1)
  • The Bobbsey Twins of Lakeport (Bobbsey Twins, #1)
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 about Carolyn Keene...
The Hidden Staircase (Nancy Drew, #2) Nancy Drew: #1-64 The Bungalow Mystery (Nancy Drew, #3) The Mystery at Lilac Inn (Nancy Drew, #4) The Secret of Shadow Ranch (Nancy Drew, #5)

Share This Book

“Read read read Thats all I can say” 33 likes
“Not many girls would have used their wits the way you did," the officer observed.” 24 likes
More quotes…