About the BookNancy Drew and her friend Helen Corning are rescued from a boat wreck by Laura Pendleton, during a severe storm. The girls from River Heights quickly befriend the orphaned Laura, who has come to the area to meet her new guardian, Jacob Aborn.
The new guardian proves to be unfriendly, and low-brow, very strange considering that Mrs. Pendleton was wealthy and sophisticated. The once-wealthy Laura is informed she is now poor, and has no money left. Aborn takes her to his bungalow on the lake. Nancy is startled to hear from Laura shortly after returning home---Aborn is evil, and life is intolerable. Laura flees and seeks asylum in the Drew residence. Nancy, in the meantime, drives out to the lake, and sneaks into the house, where she sees Aborn removing securities. She trails him to an abandoned bungalow in the woods, which had roused her curiosity on an earlier visit. There, she sneaks in, and finds a man who looks just like Aborn chained up in the basement--a prisoner. The criminal Stumpy Dowd, a look-alike, has taken Aborn's place to defraud Laura. Too late, Nancy whirls to face Dowd, who knocks her out!
Dowd is poor at binding the girl, who quickly escapes, and drives to a lakefront hotel. She calls authorities and her father, who quickly arrive to help investigate. Dowd is pursued, and crashes his auto. Nancy investigates the burning car in time to pull free suitcases containing Laura's stocks and bonds---she is still wealthy! This volume contains only one main plot, with no subplot mystery to investigate, and as such, is unique in the original versions of Nancy Drew mysteries, which usually contain at least one subplot or secondary mystery, and a subplot involving a personal matter for Nancy or one of her friends.
- Genre: Mystery
- Theme(s): Family, Children's
- Author: Carolyn Keene
- Publisher: Grosset and Dunlap
- ISBN: 0448095033
Hardcover Release North America May 1, 1960
- Nancy Drew: Tomb of the Lost Queen
- Nancy Drew: Warnings at Waverly Academy
- Nancy Drew Dossier: Resorting to Danger
- Nancy Drew: Ransom of the Seven Ships
- Nancy Drew Dossier: Lights, Camera, Curses!
- Nancy Drew: The Haunting of Castle Malloy
- Nancy Drew: Legend of the Crystal Skull
- Nancy Drew: The White Wolf of Icicle Creek
- Nancy Drew: The Creature of Kapu Cave
- Nancy Drew: Last Train to Blue Moon Canyon
- Nancy Drew: Curse of Blackmoor Manor
- Nancy Drew: The Secret of Shadow Ranch
- Nancy Drew: The Haunted Carousel
- Nancy Drew: Treasure in a Royal Tower
- Nancy Drew: Stay Tuned for Danger
- Nancy Drew: The Model Mysteries
- Nancy Drew: The Hidden Staircase
- Nancy Drew: The Mystery of the Clue Bender Society