Famous Mistakes (Nancy Drew Diaries #17) by Carolyn Keene

Why do I continue on with the Nancy Drew Diaries series when all it seems Nancy can do is be filled with self-doubt, only seems to investigate cases involving sabotage, and more often than not, has the culprit reveal themselves as the baddie instead of Nancy figuring it out on her own? That, dear readers, are the mysteries I ponder as I continue to listen to the audiobooks of the current Nancy Drew series.

From the publisher: “Nancy and her friends are out to find a comedian’s saboteur in this seventeenth book of the Nancy Drew Diaries, a fresh approach to the classic mystery series.

Nancy’s boyfriend, Ned, has recently started his own podcast called NedTalks and he just got his big break. Up and coming comedian Brady Owens has agreed to sit down for an interview. And this isn’t just any interview; it’s the first interview Brady has given since a video of him lashing out at an audience member went viral. Now people are protesting his shows and calling him violent.

Nancy agrees to help out with the technical stuff so Ned can focus on the hard-hitting questions. But when they go to meet the interviewee they find Brady’s hotel room trashed—and no comedian in sight. Luckily, they find Brady unhurt and nothing of monetary value is missing from the room. Only his notebook of new material is gone. Brady says he knows it’s the people who’ve seen the video of him yelling. They think he’s dangerous and doesn’t deserve a platform. He wishes it would all blow over.

Nancy disagrees with Brady. She thinks he should apologize to the crowd and admit that he crossed a line. But she recognizes a person in need of help when she sees one and agrees to get to the bottom of this sabotage anyway.

Complex social media charts, undercover outfits, and intense button study send Nancy, Bess, George, and Ned on a wild ride through River Heights to uncover the truth. But nothing is what it seems in this game of comedic timing. Can Nancy find the culprit before it’s too late?”

First off, the publisher doesn’t even get the facts right in their little description of Famous Mistakes (Amazon) (AbeBooks). NedTalks is about a year old according to the text, not brand new, and Brady is not an up-and-coming comedian. He went to school with Carson Drew, for cryin’ out loud. He’s been a working comedian for at least 20 years. Who wrote the book description? Did they even read the book? One thing is for sure: it’s another case of sabotage for Nancy Drew to solve. (sigh) Why, I ask you, WHY, I ask Simon and Schuster, does it always have to be sabotage that Nancy investigates? Maybe, now that Simon and Schuster got bought out, the new publishers will return Nancy to some sense of what she once was.

Prior to returning to River Heights for the opening of the new arts center, Brady attacks a heckler by saying she should be mugged. That does not go down well. The people at the arts center are afraid featuring the comic will provoke riots since there’s already protestors. Nancy only has a few hours to solve who is threatening Brady and has trashed his room and taken his notebook of new material. Our intrepid sleuth, with the help of Bess, George and Ned, follow tons of leads that go nowhere. One thing’s for sure: nothing is as it seems in this case.

The mystery is quite obvious and simple, but even as an adult, I wasn’t always sure where the book was heading. I thought it was fairly obvious who-done-it, but don’t necessarily think kids would catch on as easily. The plotline had holes in it, although even the original Nancy Drew Mysteries did, too. I thought the fact that Ned, Bess and George had bigger parts in Famous Mistakes helped the plot immensely as they all have a different skill set that Nancy needs to deploy from time to time to gather clues.

This is the 32nd Audiobook I’ve listened to as part of my 2021 Audiobook Challenge.

For my Nancy Drew book reviews, click here.

For more information about my favorite sleuth, check out Jenn Fisher’s Unofficial Nancy Drew website, which has a wealth of information.

For more information on series books, Jennifer White has a fabulous website that you can visit by clicking here.

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