The Sign of the Twisted Candles: A Review

By: Allyssa Mae S. Anuada


The Nancy Drew books were written by ghost writers. “Carolyn Keene” is the pen name of the authors of Nancy Drew Mystery stories produced by Stratemeyer Syndicate founded by Edward Stratemeyer .The ninth Nancy Drew Mystery book series is entitled “THE SIGN OF THE TWISTED CANDLES” by Walter Craig. The genre of Nancy Drew series is all about mysteries that will be unearth by the witty young detective Nancy Drew. This book is intended for those young readers who are engrossed in thriller or suspense kind of genre in reading. A classic mystery story that is very fascinating as the young detective investigates the rumors about “Asa Sidney” the relative of her friends George and Bess that have been kept imprisoned in his own mansion by the caretakers of ‘The Sign of the Twisted Candles Inn.


Nancy Drew, an attractive witty young detective with a titian colored hair together with her friends Bess Marvin and George Fayne was in for another exciting mystery to find out. At the inn they met the caretakers Mr. and Mrs. Frank and Emma Jemitt who are conniving and cruel characters along with Carol Wipple, their sixteen year old sweet and innocent foster daughter who seems to be close with Asa Sidney, Bess’s and George’s wealthy great granduncle, a forlorn old man . There is as well Mr. Carson Drew, Nancy’s father, a lawyer who’s really supportive on his daughter’s sleuthing and Mr. Raymond Hill, the Executive Vice President of the River Heights National Bank that is well acquainted with Mr. Drew. By the time, there emerged the greedy relatives of Mr. Asa Sidney, Peter Boontoon and Jacob Sidney who came in light just to inherit his wealth. Moreover, there’s also Mrs. Hannah Gruen the sweet, motherly-looking housekeeper of the Drew’s and Ned, Nancy’s boyfriend who’s always there in times of need. In addition are Mr. Krill who was desperate for money, Mrs. Dillberry, an honest old lady who owns a guest house, Wright and Manson, the helpful officers of the town.

Generally speaking, the characters in this story can as well be witnessed in the real world perhaps especially on the society where we are today. I definitely recommend this to young teenage readers, mainly seeing as they can relate to the characters in reality, in particular Nancy since she is adventurous, witty, a well brought-up daughter and a nice friend. Observed in the society today are those conniving acquisitive persons that will do whatever they can to guarantee their place here on Earth.


A new mystery for Nancy Drew is coming up when her friends ask her to investigate a rumor about their great granduncle being a prisoner in his own mansion .Getting to the bottom of the problem and make friends with Carol Wipple, she nearly loss her friendship with Bess and George for a time until a lesson about loyalty is learned. It takes all of her strong suit and sleuthing capability as well as Nancy’s tactfulness to rescue it. All at once, Nancy fearlessly and cleverly dealt with one danger after another that offers plenty of action unmarred by today’s kind of violence alongside her father, Mr. Carson Drew, her supportive friends Bess, George and her new found friend Carol as well as her boyfriend Ned Nickerson in connection with the imprisonment of the couple who are stealthily stealing Asa Sydney’s riches. With merely the sign of the twisted candles as her clue, Nancy unearths hidden treasures all-around the manor house and a surprising missive that put an end to the family feud and be the cause of the unanticipated happiness to Carol. This is a wholesome mystery story that would provide a role model even today. There really isn’t much of a mystery to this book however the story more than makes up for that.

Art and Delivery

Carolyn Keene or should I say, Walter Craig composed the story pretty well though at some points there are scenes that are questionable like why didn’t Nancy and Mr. Drew reckon precautionary measures against the apparent stealing going on because carefully as soon as any person turn his back, the thieves are sneaking their way back and pilfering whatever hidden treasure they find. It is also unlikely that Nancy and the two other guards be drugged, it’s unbelievable. They should’ve been more alert and wary on the things that might have happen.    They should’ve not underestimated the capabilities of the Jemitts.

Craig uses very descriptive words in his writings especially when he’s describing the setting and actions that are taking place and the character’s feelings and emotion. What you read is actually what you will imagine and what you will see in the pictures or drawings on the book. It’s great because the author’s description matched my own imaginations that widen my idea of what is really happening.

The title captured my interest as a reader picking up a story. The book cover excites me because there seems to be a lot of things that I have to know concerning the twisted candles, simple yet catchy.

Final Verdict

The “Sign of the Twisted Candles” is one of the greatest series of the Nancy Drew mystery stories. It’s exciting and such a cliff hanger that makes you yearn to read the next series by the time you finish reading the latter. If I would rank this out of 10 hearts, I would give it 8.5 hearts because of the scenes that are imprecise in my own opinion but still it doesn’t erase the fact that it’s one of the best. I would just improve some events to make it more realistic and credible, other than that I have nothing I want to change.


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