Written by, Kelly Thompson
Art by, Jenn St-Onge
Colors by, Triona Farrell
Letters by, Ariana Maher
Previously, Nancy returned to Bayport after she receives a creepy and threatening letter. She discovers that the author of the letter, Peter, is the son of one of the victims. Peter wrote Nancy the letter in hopes of receiving her help to solve the murder of his mother who the police claimed had died of a drug overdose. Nancy uncovers evidence at Deadman’s Cliff, which points toward Peter’s murder connected to a string of unsolved murders. Nancy and her friends, which include the Hardy Boys, George and Bess follow the evidence trail, which leads them toward the owner of a Lobster Restaurant in town. In the process, Bess is abducted, and other clues lead to dead ends, leaving the team in dire straits.
Issue #5 begins, Nancy is guilt-stricken and frozen with shock over the possible demise of Bess. Joe Hardy, who recently met and fell head over heels for Bess, is equally anxious and frantic. Frank supports Nancy and motivates her to utilize her skills as an investigator and a leader to redirect the group back to the investigation. Nancy gives the team members clear direction as they follow the evidence, which leads them back the docks to Blake Locke, the owner of a seafood restaurant in Bayport. The build-up is thorough but doesn’t get bogged down in the details. The writer develops the story and buy-in for each character in ways that feel authentic and interesting. What ties the story together is Nancy, who is considerate and thoughtful throughout, is the emotional glue.
Nancy discovers that Blake Locke has been using his restaurant as a front to manufacture and distribute drugs. Nancy and her friends go to the docks to uncover a possible motive for the murders and to locate Bess. The group of young investigators is confronted by Locke and his associates. Joe Hardy runs from the confrontation and rescues Bess. Meanwhile, Nancy confronts Locke with evidence of his guilt. The police arrive and put Locke under arrest. With the crime solved, Nancy must decide if she’ll stay or go home. Before she can make her decision, she is arrested. The ending felt a bit convenient until the cliffhanger in the last panel!
Overall = 8.5
The action moves fast but remains connected emotionally but what increases the intrigue in the story is Nancy’s perception and skilled investigator work. For example, Nancy correctly perceives that the police chief is colluding with Locke in his criminal endeavors. Thompson increases the anticipation of next month’s issue by placing Nancy as a prime suspect in a crime! I highly recommend jumping on board this fun yet compelling series.