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The Clue in the Crumbling Wall

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Title: The Clue in the Crumbling Wall  
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Subject: The Mystery of the Tolling Bell, The Secret in the Old Attic, Nancy Drew, Carolyn Keene, Nancy Drew books
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The Clue in the Crumbling Wall

The Clue in the Crumbling Wall
1st edition cover
Author Carolyn Keene
Cover artist Russell H. Tandy
Country United States
Language English
Series Nancy Drew Mystery Stories
Genre Juvenile literature
Publisher Grosset & Dunlap
Publication date
Media type Print (Hardback & Paperback)
Pages c. 181
ISBN 0-448-09522-X
Preceded by The Secret in the Old Attic
Followed by The Mystery of the Tolling Bell

The Clue in the Crumbling Wall is the twenty-second volume in the Nancy Drew Mystery Stories series. It was first published in 1945 under Carolyn Keene, a pseudonym of the ghostwriter Mildred Wirt Benson.


Nancy and her friends work to discover an inheritance concealed in the walls of an old mansion, before it can be found by some unscrupulous men.


The original art, by R. H. Tandy shows Nancy (in a shirtwaist dress), Bess and George removing a box that they have found while hiding from two men were "hacking" away at the stone walls of a garden walkway. Bess is depicted with very dark blonde-light brown hair, and all three girls are in feminine clothing, contrary to what the text of the book describes (riding pants/slacks and casual blouses with sturdy boots/shoes). Nancy is depicted in the same dress in the frontispiece.

The cover was updated with revised art in 1962 to show the same scene, with all three girls again in dresses or skirts, and Nancy's hair changed to Titian red. The frontispiece was not updated in this edition.

The story was revised for a 1973 edition with new art showing a montage of Heath Castle, the male vandals, and a perplexed and puzzled Nancy. The art work of the 1973 edition included a frontispiece and the internal illustrations that were described as crude and lacking in detail, according to adult critics and collectors.

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