Saturday, October 3, 2009

"The Mystery of the Fire Dragon" by Carolyn Keene

I haven’t read a Nancy Drew book for awhile. I started re-reading the classic series over a year ago and have slowed way down. My favorites are in the first 30 or so books. (I really like The Secret in the Old Attic).

The Mystery of the Fire Dragon is book number 38. This book finds Nancy and her female-sleuth chums Bess Marvin and George Fayne going to New York City to visit Nancy’s Aunt Eloise Drew. They are immediately involved in a mystery surrounding the disappearance of Aunt Eloise’s young Chinese neighbor, Chi Che Soong. Miss Soong lives next door with her elderly grandfather. Grandpa Soong, as he likes to be called, is writing a book about ancient Chinese archaeology.

Nancy notices some stationery in Grandpa Soong’s apartment. There is a hand-painted dragon on one of the corners of the paper. He explains that dragons are sacred symbols of ancient China. Legend says they are gods of thunder and that clouds are a dragon’s breath. They bring life-giving rain so the rice crops will grow and sustain the people.

Wikipedia says that Chinese dragons are portrayed as long, scaly, serpentine creatures with four legs. Chinese dragons traditionally symbolize potent powers and have control over water, rainfall and floods. In contrast, European dragons are considered to be evil.

Very interesting!