I started reading Trixie when I was eleven years old. My grandpa picked up the Secret of the Mansion in the bookstore (we always visited bookstores when we came to see each other) and bought it for me. I was already a Nancy Drew fan and loved anything to do with mysteries. I brought home Mansion and devoured it.
Unfortunately, it was a whole year before my grandpa could get around to taking me to the bookstore again....an entire year of wondering just what was going to happen to Trixie and Honey when they took that trailer trip. If they took that trailer trip. I wasn't even sure that a second book existed. My Random House reprint had a little ad in the back for books 3 and 4, but said absolutely nothing about book #2. I had no idea if they were going to find Jim or not.
That afternoon, I brought home the second book and snuck up to my little reading corner in the dormer window, and devoured Red Trailer too, completely forgetting about the company we had downstairs. I finished it before suppertime. I was hooked.
Over the next couple of years, I judiciously saved my Christmas and birthday money and was able to get books 3 through 6 by myself. They were wonderful, each better than the one before it. And when I discovered that there were thirty-nine of these fabulous titles in all, I could barely contain myself. Life was wonderful.
And then I bought Number 7. The Mysterious Code.
My world was shattered. Or rather, Trixie's world was shattered. The BWGs didn't act like themselves. They said and did things that were startlingly out of character. There were errors in the books--even the illustrations were weird--and the entire tone of the narrative was different. Less appealing. I was crushed. I had no idea what was going on. What was wrong with Julie Campbell? How could she write such rubbish?
Of course, it wasn't her. I discovered that one day whilst flipping through Mysterious Code. Whoever this Kathryn Kenny person is, I thought, deserves my wrath. And I thusly refused to read any more Trixies, clinging stubbornly to my Original Six.
Unfortunately (or rather, fortunately, as we will later find out), my little sister loved the brightly-colored books and checked them out of the library whenever possible. I couldn't possibly resist a Trixie when it was right under my nose, even if it was a KK. I succumbed. I couldn't believe a KK had the gall to introduce a new BWG (obviously, this is the Black Jacket Mystery we're talking about here). I scorned Dan, and sniffed haughtily at the entire book. Humph.
Tentatively, I later bought an ugly copy of the Marshland Mystery from the thrift store. It wasn't that bad. In fact, it was pretty good. I liked it. I owe my subsequent submission to all things Kathryn Kenny to this book.*bows low*
Nowadays I've taken a bit more practical approach. The "blow" has softened and I'm able to pick up a KK, read it with an open mind, keep it if I like it and dismiss it if I don't. I still prefer my Julie Campbells above all, but the better KKs provide a refreshing break and--sometimes--they're almost as good as the Original Six.
Favorite Julie Campbell: The Gatehouse Mystery
Favorite Kathryn Kenny: The Mystery of the Emeralds and Cobbett's Island