Throwback Book Review: Boxcar Children #57

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.

#57 The Mystery in San Francisco: The Aldens are back with their Aunt Jane and her husband Andy. They’re on business in San Francisco so the kids flew out to join them and have an adventure.

Their aunt and uncle have a friend who owns a fishing boat, so when the kids start hanging around to learn about the fishing industry, of course things start to go wrong. The restaurant the fisherman Charlie supplies to complains of rotten fish, boats come untied and float away, and they see people on the dock in the middle of the night when they stay overnight on a boat. When the kids go out on a fishing expedition, they find that someone has taken the fuel and cut the radio wire.

While sightseeing around the city, the Aldens keep seeing a woman who looks just like Charlie’s assistant Kate but she denies ever being at those places or otherwise has an alibi. A second fishing trip results in finding the nets cut. Someone seems like they’re out to get Charlie, or at least ruin his fishing business. And the kids keep seeing a mysterious man hanging around the docks in a suit. What is going on?

Thanks to a broken lantern that Henry finds, proving one of the other fishermen was on the dock causing mischief, they identify the person responsible for all the issues. He’s a newer fisherman hoping to get an advantage. The mysterious man in the suit is a private investigator hired to figure out who was causing trouble, and Kate’s lookalike is her twin sister, working with him. So the Aldens spend another vacation solving a mystery.

This one was interesting simply because I’ve visited San Francisco a number of times myself, so I was familiar with a lot of the places they visit like Pier 39. One thing I found hard to believe was the fact that the kids’ aunt and uncle were renting a house on Lombard Street, the crookedest street in the world. Those houses are worth millions of dollars these days.

Overall this was a fun one, I like when they visit places that exist in real life and you learn a bit about real places. I learned that Alcatraz means pelicans, which were the first residents of the prison island.

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