Throwback Book Review: Boxcar Children #42 and 43

Welcome to my weekly throwback book review! Each week I’ll be rereading and reviewing one or two books from my childhood. I was a huge reader as a child and these books shaped my life. I couldn’t possibly get rid of them, so I still have a large collection that I am sharing with all of you in the form of reviews.

What We Missed: The Ghost Ship Mystery, The Canoe Trip Mystery, The Mystery of the Hidden Beach. The kids solve a mystery about a shipwreck, go on a canoe trip with their Aunt Jane, and solve a mystery about a damaged coral reef.

#42 The Mystery of the Missing Cat: A friend of Grandfather Alden works for a reclusive man who recently lost his cat Spotzie. The kids volunteer to find the cat, but they hit obstacles at every turn. A woman who has dozens of cats thinks she’s found it, but it’s not the right cat. The kids get calls from someone else who is looking for an identical cat, and a cat collector brushes them off because the cat isn’t purebred.

Turns out the man who wanted the identical cat was hired by the cat collector to steal Spotzie, but lost her, so he wanted to take her if the kids found her. The kids foil their plan and return Spotzie to her rightful owner, who also takes in the identical cat as well.

This was the first book I read in this throwback round that featured the kids’ cousin Soo Lee, adopted by Joe and Alice. This book also had an error stating Benny’s age as five. I remember liking this one, as it had to do with animals. It’s strange that there were two ‘crazy cat people’ in their town with dozens of cats each.

#43 The Mystery on Stage: The town is putting on The Wizard of Oz at the community center and Jessie wants to try out for Dorothy. Because the kids always do things together, they all go down and volunteer for the show, including their dog Watch, cousin Soo Lee and their housekeeper Mrs. MacGregor. Jessie gets the part of the Cowardly Lion, Henry helps with production and sets, Violet helps with costumes, and Benny and Soo Lee are gofers.

As things do, things go wrong and someone is trying to sabotage the show. Sets are vandalized, costumes are destroyed, things go missing, and their Dorothy is constantly late or leaving early and acting strange. The night before opening, one of the lights crashes down on the stage.

The kids catch a man removing some of the electricity fuses on opening night, and it turns out it’s Dorothy’s father, who doesn’t want his daughter to act. The play goes off without a hitch and he is proud of her.

Benny is back to being six, but the error this time around is stating that Soo Lee lives with Joe and Alice in a town outside of Greenfield, where they live, when just the book before stated that they lived on the outskirts of Greenfield. I guess you can’t expect however many ghostwriters they have to get everything right. I remembered a lot more of this book except who was causing the trouble.

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