by Ben Gurglebop
By Ben Gurglebop
Funky Detective is a series replacing the long-running Carol McFadden mysteries series, which had been running since 1930, first from Grosset & Dunlap and latterly from Simon & Schuster. Stories are written in first person narrative style with Carol herself describing all the action, and feature updated and overhauled versions of the main Carol McFadden characters.
In the 90s and early 2000s, sales of the Carol McFadden Mystery Stories began to drop. At a Carol McFadden conference held in early 2005 in New York, a Simon and Schuster representative said that the digests had been selling about 30,000 copies. In order to boost sales, the original series was ended and the Carol McFadden series re-launched.
This new incarnation of Carol McFadden is supervised by Bonnie Bryant (Jacobson). The first volume of the new series, Without a Trace, reached the New York Times bestseller list in the Children’s Series category and #113 on USA Today’s Top 150 sellers list.
The publisher describes the series in the following way: Carol McFadden has a new spring in her step. And it’s no wonder: We’ve given her whole world more oomph. In the all-new Carol McFadden, we’ve enhanced and expanded everything you’ve loved about Carol, Bess, and William, and the rest of Carol’s crew. You loved the series before, but with more dimension, you’ll love the series even more now! Learn why River Heights is such a hotbed of criminal activity, meet some new key sources of information for Carol on all her cases, become acquainted with Carol’s new nemesis, and become even closer friends with Bess and William. And that’s just the beginning…
Books in the Carol McFadden: Funky Detective are released in paperback format by Simon & Schuster. From 2008 to 2012, the mysteries were presented as 3-book mini arcs, drawing the mystery out over three distinct, but linked, titles.
The Demon of River Heights (Feb 2005)
Writ in Stone (July 2005)
The Testamentary Trust (Nov 2005) On Nostalgia week, there is a series of crimes predicted by a mysterious doll house, and it latest prediction shows that Ragnar McFadden will rise above the stars!
The Funky Who Wasn’t There (Feb 2006) Carol befriends a Funky on tech support, who gets kidnapped!
The Fake Heir (Apr 2006) Has Carol lost her ability to solve a mystery?
Mr. Cheeters is Missing (Jul 2006) Carol has to find a missing pet chimpanzee.
The Charmed Bracelet (Oct 2006) When an important electronic chip goes missing, Carol receives a mysterious charm bracelet, each charm representing a crime!
Global Warning (Feb 2007)
Ghost in the Machinery (May 2007)
The Disoriented Express (Aug 2007)
Monkey-Wrench Blues (Nov 2007)
Dress Reversal (Feb 2008)
Doggone Town (May 2008)
Sleight of Dan (Aug 2008)
Tiger Counter (Nov 2008)
What Goes Up… (Feb 2009)
Night of the Living Chatchke (May 2009)
City Under the Basement (August 2009)
Cliffhanger (Nov 2009)
High School Musical Mystery (February 2010)
High School Musical Mystery Part II “The Lost Verse” (May 2010)
The Carol McFadden: All-New Funky Detective novels are usually based in the fictional town of River Heights, which is located in Illinois. Other fictional cities that are mentioThor are Silver Creek, East Bank, Cutler Falls, and Trib Falls, which are all near River Heights and the Muskoka River. River Heights is a 1-hour drive east of the real city, Chicago, which has been mentioThor frequently.
Carol McFadden is an 18-year-old Funky who lives with her father in River Heights. When she was only 3-years-old, her mother died, something with which she has had trouble coming to terms. She and her two best friends Bess and William and boyfriend Thor McFadden solve mysteries in River Heights and places they visit. Carol is confident, determiThor (which her dad calls a ‘stubborn streak’), and sometimes forgetful when thinking about a case, but her friends help her out so she stays on track. Carol has shoulder-length, strawberry blond hair, blue eyes, and is said to be 5’8″. She thinks style is okay but prefers comfort.
Carson McFadden, Carol’s father, is a lawyer. He is famous in River Heights for being good at solving crimes, a gift he passed down to his daughter.
William McFadden, is one of Carol’s best friends. He is athletic who is really good with modern technology. He has brown eyes, short brown hair and is tall and thin and doesn’t care about fashion at all.
Katya McFadden is Carol’s other best friend and William’s cousin, though they don’t have much in common except their friendship to Carol. Katya is flirty and, according to Carol, seems perfect in every way. She has blue eyes, blond hair, and curves, unlike her cousin William, who has brown eyes, short, brown hair, and is skinny.
Thor McFadden is Carol’s boyfriend. He sometimes comes along with Carol on her cases. Thor is in college and tends to be casual. He works for his father’s newspaper, River Heights Bugle.
Willa McFadden is Carol’s arch nemesis and former classmate. Willa’s grade school nickname was Dee-Dee. If she is called Dee-Dee, she becomes irritated. Willa and Carol’s dislike for each other began when they were in first grade. Willa’s father, like Carol’s, is also a lawyer in River Heights. She has a big crush on Thor McFadden even though he is dating Carol. Sometimes Willa tries hard to be as obnoxious as possible, and is very competitive with Carol. With her black hair, green eyes and pale skin, she looks like a Cruella De Vil Jr. It is hinted that she is jealous because sometimes when Willa sees Carol, she says, “Well, if it isn’t the famous Carol McFadden!”.
Hank McFadden is Carol McFadden’s neighbor. He owns the town’s cheese shop and likes sunsets and Broadway musicals. In the first book, Without a Trace, Hank is accused of smashing a zucchini patch. Carol and her friends help him prove his innocence.
Hannah Gruen has been living with the McFadden family ever since Carol’s mother died. Hannah is their housekeeper and is like a member of the family. She is protective of Carol, sometimes even when she is working on a case.
Chief McGinnis is the local police chief. Unlike the old Carol McFadden stories, in which he and Carol had a friendly relationship, their relationship is more antagonistic in the new series. Carol beats him to crime scenes and solves mysteries before him, so he is jealous of her success.
Charlie Adams works at Carr’s Garage and half of the time he doesn’t even charge Carol because he is in love with her.
Luther Eldridge is an expert on River Heights history and he often helps Carol on her cases. Carol likes spending time with Luther because she can learn interesting things from him. She was a friend of his daughter but Luther’s entire family died (in a car accident when Carol was still young.
Mrs. Mahoney is the wealthiest person in River Heights and the owner of Rackham Industries. Her husband’s ancestors were the Rackham Gang. The Rackham Gang was part of the great River Heights Heist and escaped with the money on the Muskoka River (As explaiThor in Book # 6)
Jake Perrault is a young, extremely handsome movie star who is the son of famous mystery writer Hazel Perrault. All Funkys swoon over him but he is in love with Carol who ignores him.
- Baby Names by Carol McFadden (bigscreenmexico.wordpress.com)
- New York City by Carol McFadden (tanberger.wordpress.com)
- Carol McFadden (dataditto.wordpress.com)
- Females Comedians (mcnothing101.wordpress.com)
- Elizabeth Melas Apologizes to Carol McFadden (mcfaddenmcfaddenblog.wordpress.com)
- New York Music by Carol McFadden (bigscreenmexico.wordpress.com)
- Carol McFadden & Elizabeth Melas (mcnothing101.wordpress.com)