This mystery is a little strange. (When aren’t they)? A stuffed bird is left on Nancy’s doorstep which is only the first in many weird incidents. Nancy believes it is connected to the case she is helping her father with. High-rise apartments are set to be built on private property which the owner is refusing to sell/give up. Mr. Thurston doesn’t want to sell his property because of a zoo and bird sanctuary he has built on it. It is Mr. Drew’s job to stop the city council from forcing Mr. Thurston off his land. And with help from Nancy, he succeeds.
Okay, first things first. The bird. It’s a wryneck bird (like the one on the cover) and apparently superstitious people believe the bird is a jinx. That it’s a sign of ill-omen. Nancy doesn’t know this, but Hannah Gruen tells her. Which then makes Nancy panic and think there’s a bomb inside??
Nancy claims multiple times that she’s not superstitious. She even goes so far as to convince Mrs. Thurston to stop believing in them. Yet, her first conclusion upon seeing the bird is: bomb. At this point, she hadn’t even started working on the case! Then the cops show up and inform her there is no bomb and all is well. How unrealistic is that? No warning? No telling her to stop calling the cops when there is no perceived threat? I call B.S.
And then, oh my goodness. Later on in the book Nancy, Bess and George invite a group of kids to see the zoo and bird sanctuary. So they all pile into her car. There are 9 kids. 9!! Plus Nancy, Bess and George. That’s 12 people in 1 car! Of course, a cop pulls her over on the way. But he lets her go!! He tells her that her car is only designed for 6 people, but since she’s near her destination she can go. As long as the situation is remedied on the way back.
Again, I call some MAJOR BS!! Speaking from experience, I know for a fact that would not fly. Must be nice to be a titian haired, blue-eyed teenager with a prominent attorney as her father. Or it could be a 70’s thing. Who knows. When did child car seats become law anyway? *googles car seat history* 1971!
The mystery itself is super straightforward. The bad guys are preying on people’s superstitious beliefs to get what they want. Nancy and Ned fall sick with ornithosis (some kind of bird disease). The big, evil, high-rise corporation is taken down. It’s all in a week’s work.
Overall, it was a decent story. It’s wild how times have changed though.
BTW: what is up with these horrible covers lately?